The ideas of several Enlightenment philosophers, such as Locke, Montesquieu and Voltaire affected the latter U.S Constitution. Locke’s idea of how a government should be run affected the governmental power. Montesquieu’s idea of separation of powers affected the division of power of the U.S government. Voltaire’s idea of a person’s freedom affected the rights of the people. The ideas of Locke, Montesquieu and Voltaire greatly contributed to the creation of the U.S Constitution.
Locke’s philosophy of how a government should be run affected the power of the government. According to Locke’s philosophy, a government’s power comes from the consent of the people. This idea was adapted in the Constitution and led to a limited governmental power, and the creation of a representative government. Locke’s idea was also applied in the beginning of the Constitution, where it says “We the people of the United States” because the statement established the idea of a government run by everyone and not just the people involved in the government.Locke’s idea led to a limited governmental power,the creation of a new government and the establishment of a government run by its people.
Montesquieu’s idea of division of power in the government affected the federal system. Montesquieu believed in the concept that there should be a separation of powers which was later adapted by the delegates. The delegates set up a government where there were three separate branches which consisted of the legislative, executive and judicial branch. Another change that Montesquieu set forth was the built in system of checks and balances, which meant that every branch had the ability to check on each others actions. Montesquieu’s idea of separation of power helped contribute to the Constitution by leading to a government that equalized the power of its governmental leaders.
Voltaire’s idea of a person’s freedom affected the written rights of a person in the Bill of Rights (the first ten amendments of the Constitution). According to Voltaire, a person should have freedom of speech and religion. This idea was the primary source of the Bill of Rights.When Congress wrote the Bill of Rights,freedom of speech and religion were guaranteed, along with other rights such as, freedom of press and assembly.
Voltaire’s idea of a person’s right to choose their own religion and freedom of speech contributed to other essential freedoms that were previously not guaranteed by the U.S. Several Enlightenment philosophers such as Locke, Montesquieu and Voltaire contributed to the U.S Constitution. Locke’s idea of a government run by its people led to a re establishment of government. Montesquieu’s belief of separation of powers led to a new division of government. Voltaire’s idea of a person’s right of freedom of speech and religion led to more freedoms and rights guaranteed to a person. These are a few of the contributions made by several Enlightenment philosophers to the U.S Constitution.
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