In colonial America only landowners voted, then those owning a certain amount of personal property.
After the Revolution, States gradually let those without land vote if they paid taxes, but many States continued religious and literacy tests.
In 1870, the 15th Amendment let former slaves vote.
In 1920, the 19th Amendment let women vote.
In 1924, American Indians could vote in Federal Elections.
In 1961, the 23rd Amendment let District of Columbia residents vote in Federal Elections.
In 1964, the 24th Amendment let vote those who could not pay a poll tax.
In 1965, the Voting Rights Act removed literacy tests.
On JUNE 22, 1970, President Nixon extended the Voting Rights Act to let 18-year-olds vote.
The Supreme Court, in Oregon v Mitchell, limited this right so the 26th Amendment was passed in 1971 to confirm it.
President Nixon stated March 24, 1970:
“In other areas, too, there were long struggles to eliminate discrimination…Property and even religious qualifications for voting persisted well into the 19th century – and not until 1920 were women finally guaranteed the right to vote.”
On August 24, 1972, Nixon said:
“For the first time in the 195 year history of this country, men and women 18 to 21 years of age will have the chance to vote.”
In 1832, Noah Webster wrote in his History of the United States:
“When you become entitled to exercise the right of voting for public officers, let it be impressed on your mind that God commands you tochoose for rulers ‘just men who will rule in the fear of God.’
The preservation of a republican government depends on the faithful discharge of this duty.
If the citizens neglect their duty and place unprincipled men in office, the government will soon be corrupted; laws will be made not for the public good so much as for the selfish or local purposes;
corrupt or incompetent men will be appointed to execute the laws; the public revenues will be squandered on unworthy men; and the rights of the citizens will be violated or disregarded…”
Noah Webster continued:
“If a republican government fails to secure public prosperity and happiness, it must be because thecitizens neglect the divine commands, and elect bad men to make and administer the laws.”
He left Yale for four years to fight in the Revolutionary War.
After graduation, he became a lawyer and taught school in New York.
Dissatisfied with the children’s spelling books, he wrote the famousBlue-Backed Speller, which sold over one hundred million copies.
After twenty-six years of work, he published the first American Dictionary of the English Language.
His name was Noah Webster, and he died MAY 28, 1843.
In his 1788 essay, “On the Education of Youth in America,” printed inWebster’s American Magazine, Noah Webster wrote:
“Scripture…may be read in schools, to great advantage. In some countries the common people are not permitted to read the Bible at all. In ours, it is as common as a newspaper and in schools is read with nearly the same degree of respect.”
Noah Webster continued:
“My wish is…to see the Bible…used as a system of religion and morality.”
In his History of the United States, 1832, Noah Webster wrote:
“The brief exposition of the Constitution of the United States, will unfold to young persons the principles of republican government…
The genuine source of correct republican principles is the Bible, particularly the New Testament or the Christian religion.”
Noah Webster continued in The History of the United States, 1832:
“All the miseries and evils which men suffer from vice, crime, ambition, injustice, oppression, slavery and war, proceed from their despising or neglecting the precepts contained in the Bible.”
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When Noah Webster wrote this public letter to the dissenting members of the Convention of Pennsylvania, published in the Daily Advertiser of New York on the 31 of December, 1787, he could not foresee a time when land owners in the United States of America would be even more restricted in many ways that what they faced at the time in Europe. With the EPA and many other government agencies, we have gone far beyond the restrictions that they faced then. Now we have to have the government approve what we build, what we till and plant, how much dust we are allowed to stir up, and even how we use any water on our property. They can declare it a wetland and fine you or forbid you from using it even if it has no water on it and is surrounded by a subdivision. I wonder what he would say today?
I wonder at his thought at the Constitution that he helped to establish would be perverted in the ways that it has been to become instead of an acclamation of our freedom and rights to a tool being used to limit us from those freedoms and rights? I wonder what he would say to those currently trying to limit our rights to bear arms?
“America” [Noah Webster]
To the DISSENTING MEMBERS of the late Convention Of Pennsylvania.
But to complete the list of unalienable rights, you would insert a clause in your declaration, that every body shall, in good weather, hunt on his own land, and catch fish in rivers that are public property. Here, Gentlemen, you must have exerted the whole force of your genius! Not even the all-important subject of legislating for a worldcan restrain my laughter at this clause! As a supplement to that article of your bill of rights, I would suggest the following restriction:—“That Congress shall never restrain any inhabitant of America from eating and drinking, at seasonable times, or prevent his lying on his left side, in a long winter’s night, or even on his back, when he is fatigued by lying on his right.”—This article is of just as much consequence as the 8th clause of your proposed bill of rights.
But to be more serious, Gentlemen, you must have had in idea the forest-laws in Europe, when you inserted that article; for no circumstance that ever took place in America, could have suggested the thought of a declaration in favor of hunting and fishing. Will you forever persist in error? Do you not reflect that the state of property in America, is directly the reverse of what it is in Europe? Do you not consider, that the forest-laws in Europe originated in feudal tyranny, of which not a trace is to be found in America? Do you not know that in this country almost every farmer is Lord of his own soil? That instead of suffering under the oppression of a Monarch and Nobles, a class of haughty masters, totally independent of the people, almost every man in America is a Lord himself—enjoying his property in fee? Where then the necessity of laws to secure hunting and fishing? You may just as well ask for a clause, giving licence for every man to till his own land, or milk his own cows. The Barons in Europe procured forest-laws to secure the right of hunting on their own land, from the intrusion of those who had no property in lands. But the distribution of land in America, not only supersedes the necessity of any laws upon this subject, but renders them absolutely trifling. The same laws which secure the property in land, secure to the owner the right of using it as he pleases. Read more at the Online Library of Liberty!
The Federal Convention, 17 September 1787
In the debate between Federalists and Anti-Federalists over the need for a bill of rights, Anti-Federalists generally believed that the absence of a written declaration was a major defect of the proposed Constitution. Without a bill of rights, they claimed, the government may become one of unlimited powers and trample on the rights and liberties of the people. Most Federalists argued that a written declaration of rights was unnecessary in theory and ineffectual in practice. In practical terms, Federalists claimed that the people’s rights and liberties are protected by the numerous constitutional safeguards that provide for mutual checks among the departments of government. Further, they insisted, the real security for the people’s rights is achieved by connecting the interests of the rulers with the interests of the people so that the rulers will have no motive to invade the rights of the people; or they argued that the true security for rights and the preservation of liberty can only be achieved by the ongoing perseverance of a freedom-loving people of sound sense and honest hearts. In theoretical terms, many Federalists claimed that the very idea of a constitution of enumerated and limited powers removes the need for a bill of rights. Elaborating on the notion of constitutionalism, they maintained that because the people delegate power to the government, and not vice versa, all powers that are not delegated are necessarily reserved to them as men or as citizens. The enumeration of the rights of the people carries with it the potential for abuse, for in the future it may be presumed that only those rights listed belong to the people. And it would be sheer folly, they said, to attempt to enumerate all the rights of mankind Online Library of Liberty
Dan Graves, MSL
“Education is useless without the Bible.” The man who said that carried one of the most famous names in America. People don’t know much about him these days, but any time they want to look up the meaning of a word, they are likely to turn to a dictionary that echoes his fame on its cover.
Noah Webster was born in Connecticut in 1758. Americans would soon be battling the British for independence. Webster became a staunch patriot. Not only did he join a regiment during the revolutionary war, but after independence, he wrote extensively, calling for a national constitution and urging its adoption once the committee in Philadelphia had drafted it. It is impossible to say how many people Webster swayed.
ruth to tell, it is hard to find an area of society to which Noah Webster did not contribute something. He trained as a lawyer, served as a school teacher, edited newspapers and magazines, studied epidemics, amassed statistics, kept records on the climate, assisted in founding Amherst College, prepared an American version of the Bible, produced teaching materials used by millions of Americans, agitated for copyright laws and compiled the first American language dictionary. (G. & C. Merriam Co. bought the rights to the dictionary in 1843, which is why many dictionaries have Merriam-Webster in their name.)
Webster was a strong supporter of George Washington. In fact, he was such a strong supporter of the first president, that he established the first daily newspaper in New York City so that he could defend his hero. The American Minerva was first published on this day, December 9, 1793.Webster was one of the first to make the daily newspaper a political force in America. Read the rest at http://www.christianity.com/ChurchHistory/11630324/?utm_source=This%20Week%20in%20Christian%20History%20-%20Christianity.com&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=12/09/2011/