A state is defined by multiple characteristics, including a government body and bureaucracy, a concentration of labor and population and a surplus of food. Other characteristics involve social stratification of the people and the levying of taxes for public works, military and police forces.
Sovereign states are those that require no outside powers to provide these characteristics, as they can generate these resources from within their borders. Federated states give up portions of their power to a federal government designed to harness the economic strengths of the states as a whole. A state's power is in constant flux due to changes in political, economic and military policies. States rely on rule of law to alter many of these characteristics, and they require governments to enforce these laws.
Both nations and governments differ from the definition of a state. Nations are defined as a geographical region and the people who share the area as one social group, whereas a government is the group of people that controls the mechanisms of state maintenance. While the three concepts often intertwine, each defines a different portion of the group of people or area. Some of the earliest historical examples of states are Rome and Greece.Learn More
The stars on the American flag each represent a state. On June 14, 1777, the first Flag Act stated, "that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new Constellation," according to USA Flag Site. As of May 2014, the American flag has 50 stars.Full Answer >
President Andrew Jackson, in response to the nullification crisis of 1832, threatened to send federal troops to any state that tried to "nullify" federal laws. The action was directed at the state of South Carolina, whose leaders, led by John C. Calhoun, opposed a tariff bill passed by U.S. Congress. Ultimately, a compromise was reached and armed conflict did not occur.Full Answer >
The Electoral College elects the president based upon the vote of a state. In an election, an individual votes for an elector who votes for the same candidate as the individual. The U.S. House of Representatives elects the president in the case of a tie.Full Answer >
After 93 percent of Hawaiians voted to become a state, Hawaii was officially welcomed into the United States at a ceremony in Washington on Aug. 12, 1959. A new American flag with a 50th star for Hawaii was officially unfurled on July 4, 1960.Full Answer >