Federalist Paper #1 Essay Examples
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Federalist #1 first appeared on October 27, 1787 and was authored by Publius. That, however, was not the real author as that would Alexander Hamilton. Hamilton wrote this essay, which is the first in a series that came to be known as the Federalist Papers, as a response to the Anti-Federalists who opposed the new Constitution that had been carefully constructed by the Founding Fathers. The month before Hamilton published his essay, the Constitution had been sent to the states for ratification and now the battle waged on whether the Constitution was necessary of if the Articles of Confederation could simply be altered. The Anti-Federalists did not support the Constitution because they felt a strong central government would override states’ rights and that was the reason the revolution was waged with England in the first place. To protect freedoms they were not being afforded.
Hamilton presents six core ideas in this essay, which appeared in newspapers for the general public to read. These six ideas are: the utility of the Union and how it aids prosperity, that the Articles of Confederation were not sufficient to maintain the Union, that the central government must have that type of power for the Union to remain in place, the Constitution truly promoted Republican concepts, the Constitution was very similar to what states had already adopted for their governments, and the Constitution was central to afford the maintenance of governments in the state and to preserve liberty and property.
Hamilton also analyzes all the factions that did not support the new Constitution. In his essay he presents them in an interesting light. There is the one group that simply refuses to institute change of any kind, even if that is beneficial for them. Another group of people did want the change because they were afraid of losing their rank within the community or their work status. Another group were individuals that knew the Articles needed to be fixed, but there was another solution that would be produced at some time in the future. Shockingly enough, Hamilton did not receive much discord or argument for his presentation of the people that did not support the Constitution.
Where Hamilton trod on an interesting tangent was when he classified the primary foes of the Constitution as largely responsible, caring individuals that simply been led down the wrong path by focusing on aspects of the Constitution they feared would claim or alter their status. The faction Hamilton was referring to were men such as Thomas Jefferson, Patrick Henry and Sam Adams. After Hamilton employed harsh words to describe the men of the opposition, he concluded by stating the conflict over the Constitution should be calmly and coolly resolved. This really did not amuse the Anti-Federalists and actually quite angered them. This behavior, however, was quite indicative of Hamilton’s personality, as he was not known for his suave manner. He could be quite brusque and pointed, although it cannot be denied his prose was outstanding. Overall, this essay was produced with inherent bias towards the Constitution and was a battle cry for all who not on board with Hamilton. It also set the stage for the debates that would endure over the Constitution. How important was this essay in procuring the ratification of the Constitution? It was merely a cog in the entire machine that eventually placed the
Constitution in effect as the law of the land. Hamilton was right as centuries later it remains in use .
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