- Andrea Morisette Grazzini
- Burnsville, MN
- United States
CEO, WetheP, Inc.
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What does the American phrase "We The People" mean?
"We the People" are the first three words of the preamble identifying those responsible for upholding the foundations of the American Constitution.
Their intent, articulated by framers of the document, is laid out in the remainder of the preamble, thus: "in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity."
Much debate centers around these frameworks and how they should be interpreted in changing American contexts. However this question doesn't seek to debate the Constitution. It seeks only to understand who these "We the People" the Founding Fathers implied are.
Some orienting questions:
1. Who decides who "We the People" are?
2. Are "We the People":
--Elected officials only?
--Are they only American citizens?
-- Do they include First Nation natives, immigrants and/or expats concerned about America?
3. What responsibilities do "We the People" have?
4. Are these responsibilities divided based on role, task or station in society?
At a time when emerging democracies in other countries are developing constitutions which echo that of the United States. (Which, adapted in 1787, in turn borrowed from earlier interpretations of democratic government models).
And while Americans struggle with deep political divides that have many feeling the country is on the brink of collapse, it is useful to take a closer look at who these "We the People" are.
Perhaps by considering this we can conceive more representative and constructive iterations of Who's job it is to define and deliver America's constitutional mandates.
By clarifying who these players charged with acting as "We the People" are, perhaps America can progress beyond it's polarizing partisan interpretations and catalyze more unified energies to achieve it's common ideals.
So, again: What does "We the People," mean?