Understanding United States Constitutional Evolution Part Two
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Understanding United States Constitutional Evolution Part Two

For over two hundred years the Constitution has served as our nationÂ’s blueprint, dictating function and organizational structure while protecting our rights as states but more importantly, individuals. The constitution is the document that we live by today thatÂ’s shaped our society as a whole but has also allowed us to evolve into the magnificent country that we are today.

Changes in time and geography and politics have also altered the context of interpretation. For example, during the Louisiana Purchase from Napoleon there were alterations to laws of the new land to prevent French invasion (Jordan, 8). In modern day we are much less concerned about the French or any Western European ally but yet the ungrounded and constantly moving cartels of violence and terrorism that occupy many regions of the world. The resulting changes in definitions of homeland defense and military have created pressures on all of the war related doctrine that is often presided by the Constitution and the legal system.

One of the major sources of change which has altered the perceptions and uses of the Constitution is the vast number of amendments according to historian Syl Sobel (85).

There are still vast points of similarities between the original purpose for preserving rights then and now. The protections of religion, assembly, and unreasonable searches remain largely in place for the same reasons as intended by our founders. The desire for a fair trial is perhaps as practiced now as in any point in history and one of the main separating traditions between the United States and other countries. We made a point to emphasize this difference several times over the last decades in the trials of Saddaam Hussein, OJ Simpson, and Michael Jackson. These court cases went through great lengths to find untainted and unbiased juries that could deliberate to the alleged crimes and found subsequent verdicts.

The way in which the federal government guaranteed civil rights and liberties then and how it guarantees them now has also changed. The way the population is represented has become a very complicated process that many civilians cannot even thoroughly explain. The two party stems has produced republican or democratic candidate by party lines nearly exclusively, according to American essay writer Sotirios Barber (108). Perhaps just as many citizens today worry about the legislative power outlined in Article One and Two giving far too much power to the federal authorities. There are also many more examples of judicial power being practiced for the thousands of civil suits and court cases.

Our founding fathers would be proud, that we today, purpose for which something is designed or exists; role. The constitution built and maintains relationships with the states and citizens of the United States. Many early Americans like Alexander Hamilton were concerned about “the imbecility of government” and the flaws of documents prior to the Constitution (Bernstein, 25). One of the interesting things about the ratification that I don’t think could happen today is the unanimous votes to ratify from Delaware, Georgia, and New Jersey which is such a rarity today (Farrand 71). Through changes and modifications the United States Constitution still stands among the world’s most copied and valued documents representing civilized society.


Works Cited

Ball, Terence. Conceptual Change and the Constitution. University of Kansas Press: 1988.

Barber, Sotirios. Constitutional Politics. Princeton, 2001.

Bernstein, Richard. Amending America. University of Colorado Press: 1995.

Co-produced with Mellissa Fischer.

Farrand, Max. The Fathers of the Constitution.

Jordan, Terry. The U.S. Constitution: And Fascinating Facts. Oak Hill Publishing: 1999.

Sobel, Syl. The Bill of Rights. Barron’s Educational Publishing: 2008.


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