This letter is in response to the latest attack on our Constitution by former President Donald Trump.
I have excerpted the words of another former president and leading author of the Constitution, James Madison. He wrote these words in an editorial to a New York City newspaper urging New Yorkers to ratify the new Constitution.
" Among the numerous advantages promised by a well-constructed Union, none deserves to be more accurately developed than its tendency to break and control the power of faction. The friend of popular governments, never finds himself so much alarmed for their character and fate as when he contemplates their propensity to this dangerous vice. He will not fail therefore to set a due value on any plan which, without violating the principles to which he is attached, provides a proper cure for it. The instability, injustice, and confusion introduced into the public councils have in truth been the mortal diseases under which popular governments have everywhere perished...... By a faction I understand a number of citizens, whether amounting to a majority or minority of the whole, who are united by some common impulse of passion or of interest, adverse to the rights of other citizens, or to the permanent and aggregate interests of the community."
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Mr. Madison goes on to elaborate on how the checks and balances in our Constitution will be the best solution to the dangers of faction. He wrote these words in 1787, but through some quirk of time, it surely must have been written for our ears today.
We will always differ in our opinions, and there will always be unscrupulous people who attempt to use their power and authority for their own personal gain, not for the good of our country. Heed these words, my fellow citizens, I implore you.
Harry Wilson | Abingdon, Virginia