Requests for Information related to Thomas Jefferson


 Rather than
being "McCarthy like," Majority Rule is the only protection a free
society has against the McCarthy's and the Hitler's and the other
anti-majority forces that would dictate government policy to everyone
else.  Majority Rule is not mentioned in the Constitution because it is
the very principle upon which constitutional government is based.  It is
that principle which the Constitution was designed to protect and make
effective.  The Constitution ASSUMES the principle of Majority Rule,
because without it, that document is completely meaningless.

Where the so-called "Constitution Believers" erred was in confusing the
principles of right and wrong with the republican principle of government
organization by which the will of a people is expressed.  In other words,
they confused MORAL JUDGMENTS with the MECHANISM by which
the moral judgment of a whole people is expressed.  Let me explain this
further and make it perfectly clear, if I may.

No vote of the majority EVER determines the morality of an issue.
Whether something is right or wrong is determined by moral principle, and
one single person in any given society may be morally correct, even if
that person is opposed by every other person in that society.  That is
the way moral principles functions.

But the question for ANY society comes down to this: By what mechanism
shall we as a society collectively decide moral questions?  Simply
stated, WHO DECIDES?  Shall those decisions be made by a single person,
such as a dictator?  Shall they be made by a small group of citizens,
such as an aristocracy?  Or shall they be made by the people as a whole?

PERFECT FOR MAKING DECISIONS!  But we in a free society have chosen the
people themselves as the safest and surest way to make decisions for the
wrongly.  But as Jefferson wrote,

"We are sensible of the duty and expediency of submitting our opinions to
the will of the majority, and can wait with patience till they get right
if they happen to be at any time wrong." --Thomas
Jefferson to James Breckenridge, 1800.

Nevertheless, the American society does not decide issues by a simple
majority vote of all the people.  The Constitution established a form of
government which gives expression to the will of the people, but at the
same time includes protections against a "pure democracy" which, as James
Madison explained in Federalist No. 10, often leads to factions and the
downfall of society.  We elect representatives, and the whole system is
designed to avoid the destructive effects of "pure democracy" and to
favor decision making that is for the best interest of the WHOLE SOCIETY.
 But those representatives are chosen by majorities, and decisions are
made at every step in the whole process of government by majorities or by
persons elected by majorities.  Changes in the fundamental form of
government can only be made by SUPER majorities, but Majority Rule is
always and everywhere the fundamental governing principle.

Those who argue against Majority Rule are never able to answer the
question, "If the majority does not rule, THEN WHO DECIDES???"  They fail
to realize that if we discredit majority rule as a MECHANISM for making
decisions, we thereby undermine the very principle of republican
government and the very foundation of a free society.  For as Jefferson
wrote again:

"The first principle of republicanism is that the lex majoris partis [law
by the greater part, i.e., majority] is the fundamental law of every
society of individuals of equal rights; to consider the will of the
society enounced by the majority of a single vote as sacred as if
unanimous is the first of all lessons in importance, yet the last which
is thoroughly learnt.  This law once disregarded, no other remains but
that of force, which ends necessarily in military despotism." --Thomas
Jefferson to Alexander von Humboldt, 1817.

The so-called "Constitution Believers" apparently have not learned this
"first of all lessons in importance."  They cite cases where certain
individuals have stood up against the majority.  Of course they have!
But they did this on MORAL PRINCIPLE!  Their effort was to convince the
majority that it was wrong!  Only in the communist, fascist, and nazi
dictatorships did there arise individuals and small groups who seized
power and instituted government that put an end to genuine Majority Rule.
 And they did this by the very methods that these so-called "Constitution
Believers" are pursuing: attempting to destroy the MECHANISM for making
decisions by claiming that they know what are the CORRECT decisions that
should be made.  These kinds of people are the most destructive forces
that can ever attack a free society, because they would, in the name of
what is "right," destroy the very means by which a free society decides
what is right.

So, the only question you can ask these people is to repeat over and over

"The will of the people... is the only legitimate foundation of any
government, and to protect its free expression should be our first
object." --Thomas Jefferson to Benjamin Waring, 1801.

>  The foundation for our country is
> at stake, and the letter published by the "Constitutional Believers" is an
> example of how the truth can be "clouded" by emotional rhetoric

Indeed, the very foundations of this country are threatened by some
people who pass themselves off as "patriots."  Believe me: there is a
direct line from those who oppose Majority Rule to the anti-government
sentiment that is so prevalent in our society and from there to the
bombing of federal buildings.  This objection to Majority Rule fosters
factionalism, as each group claims to be the "true" interpreters of the
Constitution and tries to de-legitimize decisions of the majority.

We are in a
> society where tolerance has become the catch word of American society. If you
> disagree with someone, you are not being tolerant.  Therefore I have no right
> to express even the truth about how our government works because the majority
> may not be respectful of minority opinions.  Not once did I ever state that
> the minority did not have the right to express their views or opinions.

That is the way the anti-government groups confuse issues in order to
make their points.

> issue of moral judgment is the key.  Thanks for helping me understand this and
> as fellow admirer of Jefferson and his great intellect...I appreciate your
> writings and quotations .

You are quite welcome.  It is an extremely important matter, and I am
only too glad to do what I can to help clarify these issues.


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