The American Constitution
The United States initiated their administrative past as English colonies making them to actively participate in the creation of the English idea of “liberty” via the lawful differences. Civilian conflicts played an important part in determining the British constitution. It is important to take into account that most Americans, predominantly the Northern colonies, drew their origin to the ancient English Commonwealth. The Americans shared the English notion of “liberty,” with grander belief and peculiar guarantee than even the British people. It is undeniable that the development of American statutory ideas after the Upheaval shows a steady evolution from English thoughts. It is worth noting that the constitution is not perfect and therefore it includes a lot of concession amongst people. The constitution was not a complete achievement as it may be perceived due to the many defects associated with it.
Fascinatingly when the constitutional deal was reached there was nearly no American in the political scene that raised the issue about the significance of harmonizing the three divisions of government. None of the Americans defended liberty and fairness as applied in other constitutions such as in England and Rome. The people opposed to the constitution argued that perhaps the checks and balances were not adequate enough to protect the citizens of this great nation. It was evident that the chief issue was not concerned with the appeal or perhaps the correct organization of the republican liberty and the government. The main worrying matter was how to unify the many republics of U.S. Many people believed that power may remain within the states and that the Congress would not have much power. It was clear that if the U.S was to remain a united country where the Congress has actual power then republicans may want an entirely established body. Since the constitution is already in force and supports adoption of republican form of government by deriving their power on the approval and consensus of the citizens of America (Vile 2010, 25-38).
Republicanism has played a major part in the American constitution since its revolution by emphasizing on liberty and irrefutable rights as the key values. Republicanism considered only sovereignty of the people and the fact that the people of America should be independent in their duties. Republicanism recognized that people actually had rights that could not be done away with and the need to do away with some social crimes such as corruption and greed. The citizens were considered very important and therefore they required a high level of representation and these Republican values were regarded as useful in the constitution. The heroes argued that Republicanism was very vital as far as the liberty of the people was concerned and therefore it would really liberate the Americans. However there was no balance between republicanism principles and the democratic principles because republicanism insisted on liberty for all instead of addressing the issue of liberty to the majority people. Although the republicanism constitution successfully did away with the monarchy, there was no complete democracy for all (Bernstein 2009, 168-175).
Moreover, the very people who were said to be capable of voting were denied this important right especially the blacks, he illiterate group and the female adults. Citizens did not have the so called real property could not vote thus making the constitution very much undemocratic. The issue of unfairness in the constitution cannot be left untouched while looking at the incidents or the aftermath of approval of the Constitution. People were not permitted to make amendments of the constitution unswervingly unless through elected officials who did not have the people’s interest in their hearts (Vile 2010, 25-38).
Amendments to the Constitution can be done either by the national or state legislators and ratified by legislatures perhaps because it was made to protect the government. One of the main aims was to shield the government from the people who had very special interest in the document. While considering some of the drives of the constitution, there are many unanswered questions concerning the degree of democracy that this particular document address and convincingly deal with. It is agreeable that the constitution has several issues that diverge in many aspects particularly in both purpose and content from the word go. These challenges should be treated with a high level of concern being that this is a constitution but not any other declaration (Countryman 2003, 80-92).
There are elements which undeniably exposes the undemocratic nature of the constitution such as the election of the president which is Article II sections I empowering application of Electoral College. This system gives representation in Congress power to determine who the president is without using the popular vote instead of allocation of votes amongst the states. The other issue is the representation in the senate where every state is allowed two senators without taking into consideration the population of the states. The other undemocratic part of the constitution was the tolerance of slavery which was aimed at ensuring the unity in participation of the Southern states. However, we can smile since this part was scrapped off after the American civil war. Tolerance of slavery actually intensified racism and suffering of the marginalized communities and races. The constitution has given the judiciary a lot of powers to rule anything or law passed by the legislatures (Countryman 2003, 80-92).
Nevertheless, even as we consider the Constitution as partly undemocratic, it is important to consider the historic perception at that point when the constitution was being made. At that moment for sure, the level of democracy that can be compared with the current democracy did not exist. It may be agreeable that the United States of America made rather wonderful advancement in the creation and emphasized on democratic governance and principles. The American constitution has proved very useful in many countries as they adopt it and model the form and structure of government that is similar to the U.S one. The adaptation of the constitution by other governments shows the kind of effort and sacrifice that the American heroes made while making the constitution. It has had impactful influence on the advancement of countries such as France. Even the kind of governance where an individual is required to represent a huge The document should be judged on its achievement rather than blaming it for not living up to the current standard (Bernstein 2009, 168-175).number of populations as per the United States constitution is globally used. The constitution, although written over two centuries ago should not be blamed for not meeting the current standards because it accomplished many things.
The constitution insists on very crucial things regarding governance and even though it does not address all the issues should not make anyone condemn it. It establishes a reasonable neutral mechanism which empowers it to be relevant to almost every kind of a leader. Even if the constitution did not meet the expected democracy it is still good enough and very flexible such that it can be used to boost those issues untouched. The kind of issues that people constantly blame the government for is not supposed to be related to the government. Federal or the state governments and should be put a lot of pressure in orienting these matters to the government. People should strongly stop the idea of ever blaming the constitution especially by looking at the style of leadership in the government then relate it with the American politics. However, as the people whom the constitution was made for, we should ensure that it works best to us and constantly put the government on check (Countryman 2003, 80-92).
The American Constitution can perhaps be regarded as a representative democracy because people can exercise their rights of electing leaders such as the senators through popular votes. However the founders of the constitution made some elements a bit undemocratic since they knew that democracy would have weaken some of the government’s structures and paralyze its functions. As much as democracy was understood by the heroes, they intentionally ignored it through the powers vested in them at that moment such as disallowing women to vote. The heroes further restricted the age of voting yet most of these people below the voting age having their own rights and issues to be addressed. In a republic kind of governance which exists in the U.S, an individual may perform any act on his own particularly while solving an issue. This kind of governance needs the government to work for the citizens with an obligation to them. However, luckily there is democracy applied in election of representatives and passing new laws (Vile 2010, 168-175).
Republican form of Government to all the states and possibly the need for the Constitutional Republic was to keep off from the perilous extreme of domination which to some extend does not apply. The constitution has given the elected representatives powers to perform and make laws which are consistence with the constitution particularly the federal government. This form of governance clearly depicts constitutional republic unlike the states governments which includes the mixture of both constitutional republic and a democracy. However, it is important to note that the document is just on paper and in real sense there are mixture of things happening. A lot of things take place that are a mixture of governance practices and styles. For instance, if the Congress comes up with acts that are consistent with the constitution then it shows constitutional republic. When the Congress supersedes the constitutional requirements while making laws, it is considered an autocratic republic but any law made by the Supreme Court is an oligarchy.
Bernstein, Richard B. The Founding Fathers reconsidered. Oxford: Oxford University Press,2009.
Countryman, Edward. The American Revolution. New York: Hill and Wang, 2003. 80-92
Vile, John R. A companion to the United States Constitution and its amendments. Santa Barbara, Calif: Praeger, 2010.