Were The Founding Fathers Democratic Reformers Essay Definition

NO, a historian name Charles Beard draws another view of the Founding Fathers. He states that, “the rich must in their own interest, either control the government directly or control the laws by which government operates.” Beard states that the Founding Fathers were men that consisted primary of white male lawyers, who had considerable wealth, land and slaves. Farmers were not considered to be a part of this

group. They began openly criticizing the unfairness of taxation of the federal government on them. “Thomas Jefferson wrote that uprising like this is health for the society. In short, “The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants. It is its natural manure.&#8221; Alexander Hamilton a Constitutional elite of the time, had the following to say, “Can a democratic assembly who annually revolve in the mass of the people be supposed steadily to pursue the public good? Nothing but a permanent body can check the imprudence of democracy.” With views similar to this one the founding fathers empowered the federal government the right to collect taxes, appropriate money and deny the states the right to impair obligation of contracts.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">When comparing the resources of the wealthy might have compared to an average citizen, these contracts tended to favor the rich. Two examples of these contracts extend from employer to employee and landlord to tenant. The federal government was given the power to protect the interest of the owners of such contract through laws and by force if necessary. Zinn states that the Founding Fathers were not enlightened as they are portrayed in history. “In fact, they did not want a balance, except one which kept things as they were a balance among the dominant forces at that time. Zinn further expands upon this by the fact that there was no consideration for equal balance between slaves and masters, property less and property holders, Indians and white’s protection it seems at first glance.”</p>

Roche’s thesis is that the Founding Fathers were essentially good people and that the framing of the constitution was a fairly democratic process that equally addressed state, economical, and political interests. He says that we should give them credit for the great job that they did. The Philadelphia Convention had to work very hard in order to make everyone happy. They had to do their best to achieve political equality for all the citizens while still addressing all the delicate issues necessary. He goes on to say that although the framers themselves were an elite class of people, they still had the interests of the people at heart. They knew that the Articles of Confederation were too weak and a stronger type of government was needed. They also had to keep all of the states happy. In order to get the states to ratify the constitution, they had to do things to keep them all happy. This was especially hard because many things that one state wanted, another was against.

Roche argues that their greatest success was convincing the men of the states that change was crucial for the success of the nation. The main assets of the framers in convincing the states were that they had George Washington on their side and that they had many of the greatest intellectuals of the time, including Jefferson and Adams. He also thought that Federalism was vital to the success of the state ratifications. He called Hamilton and Madison “inspired propagandists.”I agree with Roche that the framers did have the best interest of the people at heart. They were the smartest men of the time period, and they could see the Articles of Confederation were a failure and that the United States could not last with them.

They gathered together and created a document. Although any form of government will have its’ flaws, they did their best to create a fair and equal government, whose interest was to protect its’ citizens rights. I also agree that the framers had to do some convincing in order to get the states to ratify. A lot of what he calls propaganda was probably more like lies, but I still think that they were doing what was best for the country. Sometimes it is necessary for the intellectually elite to take control and make changes that are necessary for the success of a group or nation, even if the regular citizens do not necessarily see the changes as necessary.


Woll, Peter. American Government: Readings and Cases. 16th ed.

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