After Federalist No. 10

Gregory Weiner

National Affairs | 2017

“Constitutionalism at its core depends on this civic patience, and Madison’s does in particular. Madison asks that republican citizens lash themselves to the mast as an exercise, not a surrender, of freedom. His system might be best described as one of quantum constitutionalism: Just as quantum physics speaks of the locations of particles in terms of probabilities, quantum constitutionalism cannot guarantee that majority opinion will be heeded — or, for that matter, that minority rights will be protected — in any discrete instance. Rather, it generates greater and greater probabilities, growing with time, that the republican principle and individual liberty will prevail. This constitutionalism cannot withstand a politics of instant gratification.”

“James Madison” by John Vanderlyn via WikiCommons

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