By V. Susan Hutchinson
A Donald Trump type presidency was a potential reality when the newly drafted Constitution was sent to the states for approval. There were some states who wouldn’t approve without protection for the people from a more centralized government.
Because of their perseverance, it is the Bill of Rights that will eventually save America from the ravages of the 45th President of the United States, Donald J. Trump.
In The Fate of the Revolution, author Lorri Glover explains about that fight for the rights of the people.
The United States Constitution was sent to the 13 states for ratification in 1787.The Federalists, who supported the document as it was originally written, felt it was complete and needed no further changes. But, the Anti-Federalists were hesitant to approve a Constitution that gave more power to the federal government, the opposite of the Articles of Confederation, which was state focused.
Where were the rights of the people and the states in this new document?
Federalists argued that if you specifically itemize individual rights it would mean only those rights would be protected. Better not to include any and assume that all rights would be protected. The Anti-Federalists had serious concerns with a document that did not have a Bill of Rights, which were included in several state Constitutions.
Anti-Federalists were fearful that the transition of power to a federal government, now with a President, might not protect people from government over-reach or suppression. In addition, they worried that an autocratic minded president might become a new king. Anti-Federalists wanted assurances the new democracy would not become another oppressive monarchy.
Then Comes Trump
Enter Donald Trump 230 years later; an egotistical, power-hungry president out to destroy democracy in the United States.
Trump has admitted he doesn’t read, so it is a given that he has never read the Constitution of the United States. As proof of this, he insists the Constitution lets him do whatever he wants.
It’s this belief that he is all powerful that has led to an impeachment investigation, something the Constitution does allow when a president is corrupt and abusing his power.
Trump’s Twitter rants this week included accusations that the impeachment is really an attempt at a coup by the Democrats who will strip people of their 1st and 2nd amendment rights as well as the right to vote.
This is nonsense and Trump knows it.
Trump is the only one who would strip people of their constitutionally protected rights if he was given the chance. And for those who want him to be a dictator like his friends in Russia and North Korea, here’s some important information. There would no longer be a Constitution or Bill of Rights to protect the people from the federal government. As there are no dictatorships with armed citizens what would this mean? No 2nd Amendment, no right to bear arms.
Trump would take your guns.
It is interesting to read the Federalist and Anti-Federalist arguments about ratifying the Constitution and put it in context of what is going on today. Imagine what would have happened if the Federalists had won the argument. How long would the United States have lasted without any guarantee of individual rights?
In the age of Donald Trump, we are thankful the Anti-Federalists pushed for the Bill of Rights, particularly freedom of the press, freedom of speech and freedom of peaceful assembly.
These rights are the only thing keeping Trump from wielding absolute power over the people.