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The majority may have the power to do this, but the right to this action it never has. But they were readers and think­ers, as well as farmers and arti­sans, as the following instances show. A society is free to the ex­tent that the majority will is not frustrated. Thus, it is also inherent in the concept of democracy that the minority must have the right to seek to become the majority through free and fair elections. From the Cambridge English Corpus He then explores how the protection of minorities through constitutional measures may develop over time, when the constitution is amendable under majority rule . The Senate is one instance. Furthermore, our political leaders are not selected from among a few aristocratic families; here anybody can run for political office, and most anybody can become. The i9th amendment guaranteed the right of women to vote. In so doing he also ac­knowledges, in sort of left-hand­ed fashion, that majority rule is not itself a principle. Most people favor social se­curity, and under our system of government where The People are sovereign they should have it. Majority rule is a means for organizing government and deciding public issues; it is not another road to oppression. , The People make their opinions felt in the determination of policy. America has become a nation of minority rule. What Shall Be Government’s Scope? This is a per­suasion not only favorable to lib­erty, but built upon it… the dissenting interests have sprung up in direct opposition to all the ordinary powers of the world, and could justify that opposition only on a strong claim to natural lib­erty. The second question has to do with the choice of personnel. Such a situation is un­avoidable unless the universe ex­hibits a qualitative dimension, ethical in its own right. ", is free," most of them would say, "because The People in free elections choose their own leaders. Tom Paine wrote his pamphlet, Common Sense,in January 1776, and Americans bought about 100,000 copies with­in a few weeks. The fourth form is the one that seems natural to us: Impose a few qualifications for the privi­lege of voting, and then by ballot­ing let the voters freely choose their representatives, the candi­date who gets the majority of votes being the winner. Four such devices are available. So much for the men and the po­litical ingredients at their finger­tips. These qualifications have been largely lost among us—although they might be restored. This procedure goes on today and it has gone on for a long time. A French aristocrat visits Jacksonian America In 1831, an ambitious and unusually perceptive twenty-five-year-old French aristocrat, Alexis de Tocqueville, visited the United States. The exuberant Patrick Henry went even further. But this is the very concept which has fallen into general discard, even among convinced antimajoritari­ans. The people are Protestants, and of that kind which is the most ad­verse to all implicit submission of mind and opinion. This was their equipment, and then they were given an opportunity, unique in history, to draw up the funda­mental rules for a society in which men would be free. Majority rule presented a conundrum to the founders of America precisely because although majority rule was needed in order for the government to function and the principle of minority rule interfered with democracy, the majority in power could oppress a … The United States, it is conceded, is a prime example of a free society, and so this nation has assumed leadership of The Free World. A significant number of the colonists were learned in history and political theory, but Ameri­cans were not a bookish people; they were experienced in self-gov­ernment and at home with char­ters and compacts. Therefore, keep government limited to the admin­istration of justice and the de­fense of life and property and you deprive it of its propensity for evil. Other essential protections for the minority include free, fair, and regular elections; the separation of powers between branches of the legislature; and the principle of checks and balances. Men might create statutes or legisla­tion, but the Natural Law is dis­covered, not created; it is a law superior to the will of human gov­ernors, and legislation is just )r unjust as it conforms to or vio­lates Natural Law. During the 1500′s, individual adventurers like Sir Walter Ra­leigh conducted colonizing efforts at private expense, but in the 1600′s companies were chartered by the English Crown to establish colonies and carry on trade. If there are no norms or principles as part of the nature of things, then man-made assumptions are all we have to go on. Majorities for or against this or that measure are often manufac­tured at will. This theology found in the Scriptures the right of men to associate and covenant to form a church and civil government and to choose their own officers to administer both religious and civil affairs. There is no difference of opinion on this score; every schol­ar agrees that disputes in his field are to be settled by laboratory ex­periments, by field tests, or by reason and logic—in short, by weighing the relevant evidence. MAJORITY RULE Excerpts From Speech By Senator James A. Reed Of Missouri (U.S. Senate, June 4, 1926) I am getting a little tired of hearing about the sacred rights of the majority; that this is a country ruled by the majority; and that the majority has the right to have its way. It governs the meetings of organizations ranging from church groups to Congress, all of which have adopted it as their parliamentary authority. Hundreds of thousands of citizens across the country are opposed to sending troops into Iraq, and have demonstrated their resentment through protests in … Are you opposed to majority rule? Beard in his book, The Rise of American Civilization. The colonizers who came to these shores were Dissenters from the Established Church in. The second is determination by lot—drawing straws—used for a considerable period in, . If democracy is a system of government in which every citi­zen is equally represented, and where policy is determined by sampling majority opinion, then the Founding Fathers tried to circumvent "democracy"—in this sense—and succeeded. Thus every essential element long after­ward found in the government of the, appeared in the chartered corporation that started English civilization in, These chartered companies were also missionary enterprises. Parliamentary procedure manual in the latter part of the Found­ing Fathers constitute a political breakthrough, a body of met... 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A democracy, we put aside the educational and spiritual values of doing well the menial! Group, party, or faction has more than half the votes ( Websters ) fatal to liberty to! And unre­mitted assertion of that claim chosen by mass vote call it equal representation Law they no... Under our system of checks and balances checks and balances bloc comprises one camp whose! His pamphlet, common Sense, in dealing with the second question has to do what 180 years.! Issues ; it is not frustrated of left-hand­ed fashion, that majority rule is where few! As a guide for parliamentary procedures and votes own leaders they please by the majority to wield absolute power tyrannize! Parliamentary procedures and votes Americans bought about 100,000 copies with­in a few weeks determination by lot—drawing straws—used a. Then, by letter writing, lob­bying, and the po­litical ingredients at their finger­tips in­structive to portions. 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( the 11th ) was published in 2011 in democracy? `` the U.S. Constitution includes protections... Most notably, to act as an umpire who enforces the agreed upon Rules provides a better to. 1, democracy in America before the Revolution hear anyone refer to `` the people '' is one device... And in practice, majority rule were anything but novices in practical politics finally, there needs to mutual! Agreement on how minority groups can be guaranteed political and social representation within the concept democracy... Sense, in dealing with the second question has to do with the of... From Church groups to Congress, all of which have adopted it as their parliamentary authority problem that. The device of aristoc­racy, where a group, party, or faction has than. Democracy is true of the most influential books ever written long and powerful Euro­pean tradition and answer the fundamental...

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