Thomas Jefferson’s concept “consent of the governed” states that citizens have a right to design and participate in government, either directly or through elected representatives, and demand that their government grant them civil liberties and equal treatment under the law. Jefferson developed his concept of “consent of the governed” from the works of English philosopher John Locke.Continue Reading
The philosophical proposition of “consent of the governed” was a hot-button issue of the day. Dissenters against the English crown were demanding more civil rights, arguing that human beings have inherent rights no matter how they’re governed. At the same time in the New World, the Colonies rebelled against huge taxes, demanding that they be consulted about how much revenue was owed the Crown. In fact, “consent of the governed” was one of the fundamental political issues decided by the American Revolution. Jefferson, primary architect of the Declaration of Independence, made “consent of the governed” a pillar of American government, guaranteeing citizens of the new nation rights that were denied them under English rule.
Today, “consent of the governed” is just as important and just as carefully scrutinized as it was at the founding of the United States. The recursive systems of legislative and legal review of bills before Congress, mandatory periods for public review and comment, public access to government meetings, etc., ensure that the United States government is transparent and accessible to all U.S. citizens.Learn more about US History
Thomas Jefferson opposed the creation of a First Bank of the United States because he believed that such a centralized institution was not beneficial to his ideal of an agrarian lifestyle. He also believed that the United States Congress did not have the constitutional authority to establish such an institution.Full Answer >
Thomas Jefferson opposed the excise on spirits, commonly called the "whiskey tax" or "whiskey excise" at the time. The tax was widely unpopular, and Jefferson, promising to abolish the tax if elected president in the 1800 election, eliminated it in 1802.Full Answer >
While Thomas Jefferson is one of the most well-known American presidents, the quality of his leadership is debated by some scholars. Some of Jefferson's greatest attempts as a leader ended in failure, according to the Mises Institute, but his efforts inspired success in future generations.Full Answer >
Thomas Jefferson was not a solider during the Revolutionary War; instead he fought diplomatic battles with his writings. He is one of the founding fathers of the United States because his essays inspired colonists to seek independence from Great Britain.Full Answer >