The 1787 United States Constitution, to sign or NOT to sign? That is the question.

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Sandford Levinson in chapter six Conclusions: Adding One’s Signature To The Constitution writes, “Leaders of Israel, both past and were gathered at the presidential mansion, and they were asked to “re-sign” the Declaration of Independence as, in the words of the Jerusalem Post, “an act of symbolic reaffirmation of that historic document and rededication to its principles.” Several persons refused to do so, and others signed only under protest, and the Post called this “a case for worry,” a demonstration of the potential fragility of the values presumptively underlying Israel’s constitution as a nation-state”

To this I ask, “Would you as a citizen of the United States sign the Constitution as it was originally written in 1787?”

This puzzling question was brought to our attention by professor Kirkpatrick, and it definitely stirred up some emotions. The Constitution was devised of eight delegates, “framers”, by the names of  Benjamin Franklin, Thomas Jefferson, John Adams, John Jay, Samuel Adams,  John Hancock, Patrick Henry and James Madison;  they were well educated, some merchants, farmers, bankers, lawyers and most were protestant. The framers began to construct the document, adding three branches of government and bringing up float controversial issue such as slavery. On December 10, 1271 the Constitution was ratified and the Bill of Rights was then added to the Constitution. Being that the Constitution is a very important document that was meant to provide a government that would govern over state affairs, in regards to laws and to guarantee basic rights; something that The Articles of Confederation fell short on. The constitution brought injustice to the citizens of the United Stated because of the way it was written, but could it be safe to say that because of that, it laid out some type of foundation that has allowed this country to move forward and prosper.

Justice Marshall emphasized that “the government they devised was defective from the start.” Ratification of those defects “requir(ed) several amendments, a civil war, and momentous social transformation” before our “system of constitutional government” achieved the respect for the individual freedoms and human rights (that) we hold as fundamental today”

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I believe that, although the Constitution was not written to the advantage of all its citizens it was the beginning to something. Just like when you begin building a house, first you need to find a strong foundation to pour your concrete on to. Then, you begin to build your walls and roof, in time you add details that you feel make your house more suitable. The more you contemplate on what you want to adjust to your home the better the outcome. You can make a wise choice on whether you rather get rid of some unwanted stuff or add to the existing.  That’s how I believe the Constitution has proven to be, the citizens call for change and it happens. Not as quick or efficient as we might like it to be, but it has and it is happening. Patients is virtue, some of us just want it now.

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2 Responses to The 1787 United States Constitution, to sign or NOT to sign? That is the question.

  1. fallenstar66 says:

    Interesting perspective in regards to the constitution. One aspect that you had mentioned that I would like to expand on, is how you compare the constitution to the foundation of a house. Though I am not the biggest fan of the original document (mostly because of wording and how certain aspects were left out, though much of this can be attributed to society at the time, such as female rights), I have always respected and liked this document over others, because of the ability that was given to change it. Many have described the document as a “living document” and I believe this was meant to describe what you had mentioned with the house analogy: it can be changed. As has been shown throughout history, the document can be changed and amended and I believe this is one of the main reasons it has stood the test of time over so many others. Societies change with time and eventually the government or ruling party must follow and if the law does not allow this, society runs into problems. By creating a document that can be amended and changed, you are creating a document that can travel with society and not have to be discarded when society has changed so much from when it was originally created (which can easily be said about the United States today).

  2. azucenagonzalez598 says:

    I love that you juxtapose the Constitution to the foundation of a house; it is a skeleton that can be built upon, as you make the case by including the fact that the Bill of Rights were later introduced, much like the walls of a house and following details are put in place after. I believe that some start is better than none, and that thinking of the Constitution as a living document is the best way to keep it relevant and have it serve us rather than bend us without mercy. Although it may be hard to have changes created within the document, I view this aspect to be more of a way to practice citizenship. Working collectively to implement progress from stagnation is an action that should be exercised, especially in this realm, in order to truly exemplify what a democracy is.

    I do find interesting that the fact that the creation of the Constitution has paved the way for prosperity and success for people. As I do find this true, I would also add that the benefactors of this are not many. Unfortunately, the Constitution excluded many groups of people, making it easier to announce who could vote. Nonetheless, it has been a step forward for the United States in establishing it liberty from England.

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