Microsoft’s premiere search engine, Bing, celebrates the 225th anniversary of the U.S. Constitution with a beautiful graphic of the Ellis Island Immigration Museum.
225 years ago today, our founding fathers ratified the U.S. Constitution. It was the end result of a laborious process taken on by brave and pioneering men, who tirelessly argued in favor and against each other until they were able to pen document to “form a more perfect union”. The U.S. Constitution was created to replace its weaker predecessor, the Articles of the Confederation, which failed to provide for many things like an executive or judicial branch of government. In May 1787, the Constitutional Convention convened to essentially edit the Articles, but it became abundantly clear that a new document needed to be drawn. This was no easy task. There were many who didn’t believe the federal government should have power over the states. In fact, Rhode Island didn’t even send representatives to the convention because of their opposition. In the end, a great compromise prevailed and a framework for liberty and freedom was penned that has stood strong these 225 years.
The U.S. has endured many trials since those days. As a mingling of people and cultures from all over the world, it truly is amazing what the U.S. has been able to accomplish in such a short period of time. While mistakes have been made along the way, such as the participation of many in our nation in slave trading, there have also been redeeming acts performed along the way, such as many who fought and died so that the slaves could be set free. It seems appropriate that Bing would picture Ellis Island, which stood for so long as the representation of the open door America had for the immigrants of the world. How many brave souls walked through those doors, being from a foreign land, and having no idea what was in store for them.
In 2004, Senator Robert Byrd created a bill to make Constitution Day a national observance. He said, “”Our ideals of freedom, set forth and realized in our Constitution, are our greatest export to the world.” The law requires the teaching of the Constitution in all federally funded schools and agencies. He recognized that all citizens need to be informed about the Constitution. Below, I have included the Preamble to the U.S. Constitution:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
It is my sincere hope that we Americans can someday live up to the standard set forth in the Constitution and that we can someday return to the spirit of mutual respect and compromise that was so evident among the founding fathers of this nation. If you would like to learn more about the U.S. Constitution, check out these resources:
- U.S Constitution and Facts on your iPad
- Constitution Day at the National Constitution Center
- President Obama’s Proclamation regarding Constitution Day
You can also visit Bing’s page, which is full of informational tidbits at http://bing.com.