The Ratification of the Conventions of nine States, shall be sufficient for the Establishment of this Constitution between the States so ratifying the Same.
Summary of Article 7
It is generally agreed that what the Founding Fathers created in the United States Constitution is the most magnificent government in the world.
A reason for this is:
Because it was intended to preserve the American society and the American spirit, not to transform it or destroy it.
– Mark Levin
Lots of time and effort went into constructing the United States Constitution that would stand as the standard for American justice and liberty for hopefully the rest of time, but there was one minor issue.
Would enough states agree to abide by this Constitution and decide to make it the supreme law of the land?
Article 7 was created to make it so that only nine out of the original thirteen states’ ratification of the Constitution was necessary to make the document valid in the entire United States of America.
Freedom to Decide
Implementing Article Seven in the Constitution further showed how our forefathers envisioned a libertarian nation. When over fifty state delegates met in secret at the Constitutional Convention, and 39 of them signed off on the final draft of the United States Constitution, they could have forced it upon the American populace right away.
A Founding Father would never do that, though, because the great men who supported the United States Constitution all believed in having a free republic where all citizens could have a voice deciding and defining how their nation would be run. Thus, they took a risk and left the future of American democracy on ordinary people.
In essence, this was the very first referendum held in America, just before conducting the first Presidential election of George Washington on January 10, 1789. As such, Article VII of the United States Constitution set a precedence for what kind of nation America would always be.
Ram Nath Kovind once said,
“Our Constitution gave us rights as citizens of a free democratic nation, but also placed on us the responsibility to always adhere to the central tenets of our democracy – justice, liberty, equality, and fraternity.”
Fight for Change
The majority of Americans are very passionate about faith and politics. From the beginning of America’s formation, it has been that way. But, just as we have Democrats and Republicans standing for election, back in 1787, Federalists and Non-Federalists were standing for election.
Federalists felt that a large government that encompassed the entire nation was necessary to unify everyone and keep all citizens on the same page regarding the federal government and laws therein.
The Federalist Papers set out why the idea of ratification is so important and is a big supporter of the ideas set out in Article 7 of the Constitution.
You also had the Non-Federalists who believed that government would work best when scaled down to a local level and limited national authority to preserve individual liberties better.
In a compilation of letters and thoughts called the Anti-Federalist Papers, George Clinton, Robert Yates, Samuel Bryan collectively expressed the following sentiment of concern:
“Compulsive or treacherous measures to establish any government whatever, will always excite jealousy among a free people: better remain single and alone, than blindly adopt whatever a few individuals shall demand, be they ever so wise. I had rather be a free citizen of the small republic of Massachusetts, than an oppressed subject of the great American empire.”
Throughout the United States then, people were divided. It makes one wonder how discouraged our Founding Fathers must have been hearing complaints and comments such as the one mentioned above. Still, they kept their faith that they could begin building a better, responsible, free nation that is the America we know today.
Finally, on June 21, 1788, New Hampshire became the ninth state to accept the Constitution as the ultimate authority of governance to maintain justice and reinforce God-given liberties. From that point, it would forever be regarded as the supreme law of the land.
It is safe to say that our ancestors had no idea what a monumental time they were living in and how much they had indeed changed the course of history for the better.
Once President George Washington and the vice president began their term on March 4, 1789, they carried out their duties. He established people to serve in the House and Senate and Judiciary positions. A new republic was forming stronger than any previous attempts at a free nation.
Article 7 created independence
Article 7 of the United States Constitution culminated in our forefathers’ great efforts in the incredibly long road to independence. Change is never easy but necessary for progress.
Before long, they could see their vision of democracy coming to fruition. A government of the people, by the people, and for the people was built upon the backs of men who were brave enough to stand up for what they knew was right.
May we not forget these words spoken by Abraham Lincoln:
“Don’t interfere with anything in the Constitution. That must be maintained, for it is the only safeguard of our liberties.”
Citizens of the United States must remember how far it took to get to where we are now and think twice before attempting to change this text that is the Constitution to fit our whims and ideas. For if we forsake our past, we are destined for future disaster.