Ms. Christine Soderquist
31 March 2015
The founding father’s created our country on the basis of democracy, where the people had the power to rule their own country. As political parties began to emerge, the founding father’s initial theory of democracy began to be tainted by the very coalitions and factions they tried to prevent. It becomes almost painstakingly clear that the two party system has undermined the Constitution, and furthered our country from the democracy that our framers created.
Even before our country was created, the framers of the Constitution were very adamant in their distrust of political parties, and the negative effects that they can have on our country. Thomas Jefferson said it best when he stated that, “ a democracy is nothing more than mob rule,
where fiftyone percent of the people may take away the rights of the other fortynine.” We see this happening in our modern government very consistently. Where one party controls the House of Representatives or the Senate, and only passes legislation that that party wants. This undermines the basis on democracy, in where the all the people should have the power, but in
reality, only a small fraction of the people end up having the power over the rest of the country. James Madison also addresses the question on how to defend against “factions”, or groups of
citizens, with interests contrary to the rights of others or the interests of the whole community, in his Federalist Paper 10. Madison writes in the paper that “Faction is human nature. The most durable cause of faction is unequal property distribution. Regulating conflicting interests involves partisanship and faction” and later in the paper “People look to government for the protection of property and to regulate the competing interests concerning property.” The Federalist Paper 10 further demonstrate the knowledge that, factions are always going to exist, and unfortunately they are unavoidable. However, political parties cause an unequal distribution of power. People in the United States have always looked to the government for protection, however, when these political parties were formed, it’s almost as if the two party system created an act of tyranny in a way as the political parties looked after their own interests before the public good. As support to the argument that James Madison had in The Federalist Papers 10, he continues with, “The smaller the society, the fewer probably will be the distinct parties and interests composing it; the fewer the distinct parties and interests, the more frequently will a majority be found of the same party; and the smaller the number of individuals composing a majority, and the smaller the compass within which they are placed, the more easily will they concert and execute their plans of oppression. Extend the sphere, and you take in a greater variety of parties and interests; you make it less probable that a majority of the whole will have a common motive to invade the rights of other citizens;” James Madison is ultimately warning that if parties are allowed to grow to a certain point, tyranny will follow very closely. Even before democracy was created. Madison shows us that parties are an obvious step in the opposite
direction. Thereby, Madison’s Federalist Paper 10 helps to convey his theory that political parties do not help, but harm democracy by creating tyranny of one faction of the country overpowering another faction of our country.
George Washington’s farewell address was one of the first public oppositions to the ideas of political parties. Prior to George Washington becoming President, there was no such thing as a political party. However, political parties began to emerge during Washington’s term in office, these being the Federalists and Antifederalists. President George Washington’s ...
Cited: ● http://capitalismmagazine.com/2012/07/thefoundingfathersanddemocracy/
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