The American Heritage

Question One: Arguments against the Bill of Rights

Some of the most important years in the United States history is that between 1787 and 1789 when the US Constitution wasframed and ratified. During this time, two factions namely Federalists and the Anti-Federalists deliberated about the Constitution’s lack of the Bill of Rights, which comprised ten amendments to the US Constitution. The issue remained controversial until when the Bill of Rights was included, and the Constitution ratified on 15th December 1791. However, almost two centuries down the line, questions still linger in people’s minds whether the Bill of Rights should have been incorporated into the original US Constitution. Personally, I believe that the Bill of Rights should not have been included in the Constitution for two clear and compelling reasons. 

Firstly, even after the inclusion of the Bill of Rights, and after more than two centuries of a series of amendments and improvements, the Bill of Rights remains a controversial and highly misunderstood clause. Till today, most of the amendments remain unclear and a center for political controversies. For instance, the 2nd Amendment of the US Constitution has been under scrutiny and a center of argument in the recent years. While the section allows the Americans to own handguns, various laws have been formulated to limit the peoples’ rights. Similarly, the 10th Amendment remains one of the most debatable parts of the Constitution. It requires that all powers not delegated to the Federal government be transferred to the people and the regional governments. However, the amendment remains contentious because the administrators think that the clause calls for a transfer of significant powers of the Central government thus forbidding it from the tasks not defined in the Constitution. As such, the inclusion of the Bill of Rights can be seen just to create confusion while making a ground for persistent controversies.


Secondly, while the Bill of Rights gives basic rights to the Americans, laws are usually passed to mandate and infringe these rights. In effect, people tend to be denied their rights and liberties and is thus acceptable to say that the Bill of Rights does not provide adequate protection to individual rights. Therefore, I argue that the Bill of Rights is full of flaws, and should not have been incorporated into the original US Constitution. 

Question Two: Differences between Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton

Undoubtedly, Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton were different in all capacities. Jefferson was an anti-federalist while Hamilton was a Federalist. Hamilton was among the supporters of the proposed US Constitution and saw no need for integrating the Bill of Rights. Hamilton perceived the Bill of Rights as both dangerous and unnecessary. In the contrast is Jefferson, who was among the opposers of the proposed US Constitution. He and others thought that there was a dire need for the Constitution to include the Bill of Rights without which the new government would be tyrannical and unstable. 

Between Jefferson and Hamilton, the former was associated with more superior arguments and views. As an anti-federalist, Jefferson pushed for the inclusion of the Bill of Rights into the Constitution. He suggested that a Bill of Rights was quite necessary if the then young nation was to remain stable and democratic. It would ensure that the government honored the rights of citizens such as the freedom of speech, the freedom of the press, and the freedom of movement. Without such written guarantees, then the government would likely become tyrannical.  As such, Jefferson was more enlightened in calling for a Bill of Rights necessary to protect the rights of the American people. 

It is acceptable to say that after incessant debates between Federalists and the Anti-Federalists, much good that prevails to date follows.  After James Madison, initially a Federalists, changed his mind on the Bill of Rights, he influenced others to supportthe inclusion and ratification of the Bill of Rights into the Constitution. Evident in the US today, all citizens have their individual rights guarded by the Constitution. Presently, the Bill of Rights lists the Fundamental human rights and places a limit on the Federal government by making sure that it does not breach them. In fact, with the Bill of Rights, the modern United States is a democratic rather than a tyrannical state. People enjoy the freedoms of speech and religion, the right to bear arms, protection from unreasonable searches as well as assurance that the powers not delegated to the federal government are reserved to the states and the people. We can thus conclude that the efforts of the nation’s founding fathers persist till today. 

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