The Constitution Reader Challenge: Day 13

With special thanks to Constituting America and Heritage College, we will be taking part in their project:The U.S. Constitution: A Reader. It is a 90 day challenge to learn and dive deeper into understanding the Constitution.

In case you missed it, catch up with day 12 HERE. We hope you are enjoying this journey to dig deeper into what inspired those who wrote the Constitution. If you are, TWEET IT!

To read today’s challenge, CLICK HERE.

Today we take a look at the beginnings of Thomas Jefferson and his emergence on the stage as one of authority and inspiration of things to come in America.

And, little can be said about Thomas Jefferson that hasn’t already been said. So, it just may be time to crawl out from under that rock you’ve been hiding under if you don’t know about Jefferson and his influence.

Thomas Jefferson was extremely implemental in the construction of the Constitution. It is more evident when you take a look at his “Summary View of the Rights of British America.” It was his first publication and it helped lay the groundwork of things to come.

One theme, if not the central theme, Jefferson shares is Freedom. He states:

“America was conquered, and her settlements made and firmly established, at the expense of individuals, and not of the British public. Their own blood was spilt in acquiring lands for their settlement, their own fortunes expended in making that settlement effectual. For themselves they fought, for themselves they conquered, and for themselves alone they have right to hold.”

This central theme is echoed when he discusses the use of taxes.

Taxes are how Great Britain tried to get an advantage of power over the people of America. At the time, they had been issuing taxes on just about everything. Which brought about the now famous Tea Party in the Boston Harbor.

So, Thomas Jefferson took liberty to express that America, and the land thereof, was not theirs to have jurisdiction over. Simply put, what was the Americans was theirs, not the right of Great Britain.

He also took the stance to say that rights were Natural and not to be denied when he said:

“Let no act be passed by any one legislature which may infringe on the rights and liberties of another.”

And, that they were ready to establish a union and sacrifice whatever was needed. This sacrifice would soon be shed in the blood of those Patriots who fought for the Union and its Independence.

In the end, it is easy to see the influence Jefferson had. Not only in the Constitution, but in the Declaration to the world that America was here and now.

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