The Farmer Refuted Reflection

Published: 2021-09-29 12:50:08
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Category: History of The United States

Type of paper: Essay

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While issues surrounding monarchy are practically nonexistent in America today, the point Hamilton makes here is nonetheless relevant to our society despite being over 200 years old. Democracy, in Hamilton’s time, was an achievable ideal; the American Revolution was the result of many Americans agreeing with Hamilton’s ideas about democracy. In an ideal democracy, everyone in said democracy would “consent” to being governed by the person or people in office; however, the only time that has ever happened in our history occurred when George Washington was unanimously voted into office (even though women and minorities were not allowed to vote – how is that unanimous?). Our democracy is far from ideal, and we see the ramifications of this today. Government policies such as the electoral college prevent the people from really and truly having a voice as Hamilton describes it, and while at one point we may have had leaders who attempted to protect our “personal liberties”, that is not the case today.
Hamilton also says that “ignorance of [the rights of mankind] in this enlightened age cannot be admitted” (Hamilton 86). Hamilton was writing this in 1775. By any means our society is far more “enlightened” than his, and yet centuries later we still are having to debate whether or not human rights are “valid”. As we discussed in class on Friday, our ideas about how a society should function are not new; Hamilton’s eloquent tearing down of a Farmer’s argument shows us this. Even though he is technically directing his argument at a single person, he is advocating for a larger movement towards democracy and even more importantly, for the rights of the people in his society who may not be as able to advocate for themselves. While The Farmer Refuted is by no means The Declaration of Independence, it nevertheless promoted change in the culture in which it was written by using language to influence people’s ideas about said culture (and, to quote the song based on this work, Hamilton did indeed “tear this dude apart”).

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