Essay on The Constitution as A Democratic Document

Essay on The Constitution as A Democratic Document

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Upon the opening words of the Constitution, "We the People…do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America," one must ask, who are these people? While the American Constitution provided its citizens with individual rights, many members were excluded. Elite framers manipulated the idea of a constitution in order to protect their economic interests and the interests of their fellow ‘white land and slave owning men' by restricting the voices of women, slaves, indentured servants and others. Therefore, the Constitution cannot truly be considered a "democratic document." However, because it is a live document, malleable and controllably changeable according to the interest of congress, it has enabled us to make reforms overtime. Such reforms that have greatly impacted America, making us the free, independent nation that we are today.
The elite opted to prevent rebellions which voiced the opinions of disregarded members of society such as women, slaves, indentured servants, and men who didn't own land, by intervening and taking them into their own hands because they wanted to preserve their power. In 1780, Shay's rebellion, led by Daniel Shay, a veteran of the Battle of Bunker Hill, allowed farmers who were unable to pay their mortgage, to speak out. Creating chaos amongst the peaceful streets of Springfield, armed farmers were stopped by state militia. Shay's rebellion led way to the Philadelphia Convention in which fifty-five men representing twelve states congregated on 1787, in proposal of drafting a new constitution. Through the occurrence of the American Revolution, they were aware of the power that their people were able to execute and wanted to stabilize the government by creating a new Constitution....


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...his Union a Republican form of government, and shall protect each of them against invasion; and on Application of the Legislature, or of the Executive (when the Legislature cannot be convened) against domestic violence."

Considering the Constitution excludes the four groups which make-up a majority of America during the time; women, slaves, indentured servants, Native Americans and men who have no land, how can one regard the constitution as a democratic document? Although the Constitution excluded a majority of its citizens and was founded by elitist framers, because it is a document that depends solely on the interpretation of its reader, it has progressed overtime. As Madison notes, it is our diversity that unites us as a nation. Without the Constitution, perhaps I wouldn't even have had the opportunity to write this essay and question my country's Constitution.

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