Welcome to Read The Constitution, Stupid and, no, the title of the website isn't aimed at you personally. The original idea was to orient the site to members of the federal government as a sort of put-on. However, over the recent past it has become clear that the problem is not simply one of poorly educated politicians, but rather includes the general body politic. This seems to be a result of an educational system that ignores the role of the Founders and Framers and the documents and discussion associated with the establishment of the Republic. Accordingly, Aristotle's fourth century BC admonition that the least initial deviation from the truth is multiplied later a thousandfold is precisely what Jefferson was warning against in the above quote. In order to understand our Founding and Framing documents, we must understand their meaning as originally intended and not what we, with a considerably different grammar and dictionary, believe them to mean. And the only way to attain that end is to familiarize oneself with their arguments, in their words, and with the meanings intended at the time. Absent such an understanding we will have lost our government of laws and replaced it with a government of wants and desires.
Most faults are not in our Constitution, but in ourselves.
Ramsey Clark, remarks at meeting sponsored by the Center for the Study of Democratic Institutions, New York City, November 11, 1970,
Guard against the impostures of pretended patriotism.
George Washington, Farewell Address, September 19, 1796
James Madison (1751-1836), a signer of the Constitution from Virginia, when the work of the Constitutional Convention was completed, went on to play a major part in its ratification process by joining John Jay and Alexander Hamilton in writing the “Federalist Papers.” He became a member of the House of Representatives (1789-1797), was United States Secretary of State (1801-1809), and President of the United States (1809-1817). He outlived all of the other Founding Fathers.
Article V - Amendment Process - United States Constitution
The Congress, whenever two thirds of both Houses shall deem it necessary, shall propose Amendments to this Constitution, or, on the Application of the Legislatures of two thirds of the several States, shall call a Convention for proposing Amendments, which, in either Case, shall be valid to all Intents and Purposes, as Part of this Constitution, when ratified by the Legislatures of three fourths of the several States, or by Conventions in three fourths thereof, as the one or the other Mode of Ratification may be proposed by the Congress; Provided that no Amendment which may be made prior to the Year One thousand eight hundred and eight shall in any Manner affect the first and fourth Clauses in the Ninth Section of the first Article; and that no State, without its Consent, shall be deprived of its equal Suffrage in the Senate.