Akhil Reed Amar on the Constitution’s 225th

This week is extra-special for all who care about the U.S. Constitution.  Exactly 225 years ago, the Philadelphia framers signed the document and went public with their bold plan to let ordinary citizens across the continent vote the plan up or down in a series of special elections.

Since I was too young to play much of role in celebrating the Constitution’s bicentennial in 1987—and God only knows if I will be around for the document’s 250th birthday party in 2037—I am making the most of the 225th!

I have timed the release of my new book—many years in the making—to coincide with this important anniversary.   I will be discussing the book, America’s Unwritten Constitution: The Precedents and Principles We Live By, at a free public event at the National Constitution Center this Friday, September 21, starting at 1 PM.

Also, I’ve penned a series of op-eds appearing in various venues this week to highlight certain aspects of our Founding moment.

In the LA Times, I claimed that this week 225 years ago was nothing less than hinge of modern world history—the week that put democracy in the world on a completely different trajectory.

In the Philadelphia Inquirer, I reflected on how the project begun by our Founding Fathers is now largely in the hands of women, who will be a majority of voters in the coming election, thanks largely to the Nineteenth Amendment.

In Slate.com, I have a piece inviting readers to imagine what our Constitution should look like 225 years into the future; and over at the Newsweek/Daily Beast website, I will be running a piece sometime this week on how the Constitution can help us see the strengths and weaknesses of our current presidential candidates in a fresh light.

Happy Birthday, America!

Akhil Reed Amar is Sterling Professor of Law and Political Science at Yale University, where he teaches constitutional law at both Yale College and Yale Law School.

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