- A government of laws, not of rulers.
What A Profound Concept!
Throughout most recorded history, people have been governed by rulers' law - the law that rulers chose to impose. The people had no real choice.
America's Founders believed liberty too precious to entrust to leaders. For the first time ever - in America, in 1787 - the people themselves prepared their own written Constitution - one of laws and people, not of rulers. It not only protected them from the harmful acts of other citizens; more importantly, it protected them from their own government.
The framers of the Constitution recognized that governments are made up of imperfect people who tend to abuse power. Thomas Jefferson said:
"In questions of power ... let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution."
For the first time in history, a people had put a stop to rulers' tyranny and provided a base for a genuinely free people.
Part of the Miracle of America lies in this concept - a government of laws, not of rulers.