2011 Constitution Display, Corvallis-Benton County Library

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Presented by the Benton County Republican Women of Oregon
September 2011

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U.S. Constitution Library Display, September 2011
Corvallis-Benton County Public Library, Corvallis, Oregon
Presented by the Benton County Republican Women of Oregon

Text Accompanying Graphics & Photos:

Charters of Freedom
These Founding documents stand together. What is not mentioned in one is defined in the others.

Declaration of Independence
United States Constitution
Bill of Rights
Amendments 1-10 and Amendments 11-27

The Preamble to the United States Constitution is a brief introductory statement of the Constitution's fundamental purposes and guiding principles. It states in general terms, and courts have referred to it as reliable evidence of, the Founding Fathers' intentions regarding the Constitution's meaning and what they hoped the Constitution would achieve.
Source: Wikipedia

We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

The Constitution was “penned” by Jacob Shallus, A Pennsylvania General Assembly clerk, for $30 ($726 today).

The U.S. Constitution has 4,543 words. It is the oldest and shortest written Constitution of any major government in the world."

The United States of America is a REPUBLIC!
In our 2010 display, there was some controversy over the answer to the question:
“Did the Constitution establish a democracy in America?”

The answer is “No.” The Founders’ reasoning was that a democracy leads to ‘mob rule’ and disregards the rights of the individual (minority).

When it came time for the states to ratify the Constitution, the lack of any bill of rights was the primary sticking point.

When the Constitution was signed, the United States’ population was 4 million. It is now more than 309 million. Philadelphia was the nation’s largest city, with 40,000 inhabitants.

The U.S. Constitution was ratified in 1789 with 9 of the 13 states voting for ratification.
Eventually all 13 states would ratify the U.S. Constitution.

Who was Publius?
What are the Federalist Papers and why are they important?

Of what class of society were the members of the Constitutional Convention?
All classes. They were lawyers, soldiers, planters, educators, ministers, physicians, financiers, and merchants.

"No free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms. The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."
-- Thomas Jefferson
Vol. 1 Thomas Jefferson Papers, 334

A Bill of Rights exists in the U.S. Constitution in order to protect certain individual rights: the freedoms of speech and religion, the right to bear arms, etc.

The individual rights enumerated in the Bill of Rights cannot be voted away by the majority of citizens if they wished to oppress a minority who does not agree with the restrictions on liberty that they wish to impose. To eliminate these rights would require government officials overcoming constitutional checks as well as a two-thirds majority vote of Congress and ratification by three-fourths of the States in order to amend the Constitution.

Items in lower portion of 2011 display
BE IT REMEMBERED, that on the 3d day of November, A. D. 1827, the fifty-second year of the Independence of the United States of America [this book was submitted] in conformity to the act of the Congress of the United States, entitled, “An act for the encouragement of learning, by securing the copies of maps, charters and books, to the authors and proprietors of such copies during the time therein mentioned.” --Clerk of the District of Massachusetts
“Early Americans knew they were in possession of a unique and valuable invention of political science, and they were determined to promote it on all levels of education.” --W. Cleone Skousen, 5000 Year Leap

BCRW Buttons relating to the U.S. Constitution
Pocket Declaration of Independence & U.S. Constitution

PJ Hunter
Stella Guenther
Lyn Riverstone (2009 parts)