Guest Essayist: Troy Kickler, Ph.D., Founding Director, North Carolina History Project and editor of

It seems today that many Americans wrongly perceive the Constitution as a roadblock on the way to a better America.  Not too long ago during a dinner conversation, this unfavorable view of the Constitution was expressed to me.  The person had overlooked the enduring qualities of the document–qualities that have allowed freedom to flourish and have kept tyranny in check.

In “What Good’s A Constitution,” former British Prime Minister Winston Churchill reminds readers that the American Constitution has been the “shield of the common man,” and its framework and provisions reveal that a government exists for individuals.  Individuals do not exist for the government.  Churchill wrote the 1936 article in an era in which Fascist dictatorships had emerged in Italy and Germany and Russia’s Communist experiment Read more

Written soon after Franklin Roosevelt’s Democratic Convention Address of 1936, this article by British statesman Winston Churchill points to the wide gulf between Churchill’s and Roosevelt’s economic views, even if five years later they would forge a close wartime alliance. Beyond their differences on economics, Churchill sees the American Constitution as an enduring source of strength for the American republic, not an obstacle to be overcome.

August 22, 1936

No one can think clearly or sensibly about this vast and burning topic without Read more