Essay on The Genius of the American Constitution

1094 Words5 Pages
“When people fear the government, there is tyranny. When the government fears the people, there is liberty.” By 1787, the enlightened statesmen began to understand and accept the flaws of the Articles of Confederation. It was too weak and did not allow the new nation’s economy to thrive. The system under these articles failed to create a strong central government and even lacked a court system. One major weakness of the central government was that they could not tax the states and this lead to an uneven distribution of power, and the states became overwhelmingly powerful. The challenge was to write a new constitution that was strong enough to hold the country and states together, secure the rights of the people, and not allow a single…show more content…
“When people fear the government, there is tyranny. When the government fears the people, there is liberty.” By 1787, the enlightened statesmen began to understand and accept the flaws of the Articles of Confederation. It was too weak and did not allow the new nation’s economy to thrive. The system under these articles failed to create a strong central government and even lacked a court system. One major weakness of the central government was that they could not tax the states and this lead to an uneven distribution of power, and the states became overwhelmingly powerful. The challenge was to write a new constitution that was strong enough to hold the country and states together, secure the rights of the people, and not allow a single person, or a group of people to become tyrants. So when the fifty five representatives meet in Philadelphia during May of 1787 to amend the articles, they instead created a new and revolutionary government that was strong, powerful and protected the people against tyranny. The constitution guarded against tyranny by the separation of powers, a system of checks and balances, and by establishing federalism. The problem of tyranny can exist even within a democracy when “The accumulation of all powers, legislative, executive, and judiciary, in the same hands, whether of one, a few, or many…may be justly pronounced the very definition of tyranny.” The Constitution called for a separation of powers, and federalists, such as James Madison
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