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Who are "We the People"? Meaning and Importance

Written by Justin Pearson


Posted on September 26, 2022

"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." ~ Preamble of the U.S. Constitution

Meaning of "We the People"

The first three words in the Constitution are the most powerful: We the People. They declare that the Constitution derives its power, not from a king or a Congress but from the people themselves. This concept of popular sovereignty, power to the people, is the foundation upon which the entire Constitution depends.

While you may think that “We the People” is about all Americans, there is much more to the phrase. “We the People” includes all the citizens of the United States of America. The importance of this phrase shows that it wasn't just the framers of the Constitution or the legislators who were given powers to the government. Instead, the government gets all of its powers from the Citizens of the United States of America.

When you read the entire preamble, you can see that “We the People” give the government its powers. This is very important because without the people lending that power, the United States Constitution would not have been able to become the guideline for the Republican government we have today.

Universal Founding Principles

Edwin J. Feulner, the founder and former president of The Heritage Foundation, provides a great explanation of America's unique founding principles:

"Our nation is unique because of its universal founding principles. At the heart of these principles is the belief that people are free by nature and possess inherent rights. The use each one of us makes of these rights will naturally be different, and the outcomes of those choices will naturally differ, too. But the choice remains ours.

Freedom is thus inextricably bound up with living our lives as we see fit. This is self-government in the truest sense of the term. We the people need not slavishly defer to experts. We can be trusted to govern ourselves."

Those last two sentences seem more critical today than ever before. We often hear the phrase "trust the experts" when we are asked to give up our freedom and rights granted by the Constitution. This contradicts America's founding principles and should be met with skepticism about its true intent!

Like the faded flag in the background, our nation has been torn, and "We The People" must stand boldly and unite!

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We The People - American Flag Apparel - USA Shirt - Patriotic Shirts for Men - Proper Patriot

The Constitution, by opening up with “We the People,” immediately affirms that the Constitution is of the people, for the people, and by the people of the United States.

As Proper Patriots, United States citizens, and our country's sovereign entity, it is our duty and privilege to inherently question those in power. We should not just listen to what politicians tell us what they’ll do but pay close attention to what they do and what interests they serve.

Furthermore, we should seek to know, connect with and serve our fellow citizens. A tyrannical government is only possible when the people largely depend upon the state and not our more local areas' organic relationships and networks. We, the People, take back our power by building families, communities, and businesses that free us from dependence on the centralized control systems of government and industries.

Let’s restore the power of the people by building our own loving families, friendly communities, and wholesome businesses with selfless leaders that love this country!

Enjoy these patriotic quotes on the U.S. Constitution:

"The Constitution is the guide which I will never abandon." - George Washington

"The happy Union of these States is a wonder; their Constitution a miracle; their example the hope of Liberty throughout the world." - James Madison

"The glory of justice and the majesty of law are created not just by the Constitution - nor by the courts - nor by the officers of the law - nor by the lawyers - but by the men and women who constitute our society - who are the protectors of the law as they are themselves protected by the law." - Robert F. Kennedy

"The U. S. Constitution doesn't guarantee happiness, only the pursuit of it. You have to catch up with it yourself." - Benjamin Franklin

"We the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution but to overthrow the men who pervert the Constitution." - Abraham Lincoln

Sources: ‘We the People’ - Edwin J. Feulner, Ph.D.

Photo credit: Getty/alancrosthwaite



  • We the (P)eople does not mean the citizens of the UNITED STATES. There was no such thing as a U.S. citizen in 1776. The People is referring to the signers of the document and their posterity.

    Posted by Philip Nelson | July 04, 2024
  • We the People certainty does not mean what it meant in 1776 anymore! Thank Gosh it has gotten better over the years, but i think it still mean We as in the American Citizens!

    Posted by NJ | April 30, 2024
  • Can’t decide whether you want to be a moron or an oxymoron? Just call yourself a conservative patriot and you’re instantly both!

    Posted by Mike | March 12, 2024
  • Regarding “We The People”.. I think everyone is missing the point. We can argue oh.. blacks weren’t included.. Tell Lincoln that…Women.. Tell your wife that. Folks, if you are patriotic then you want the United States to be strong. Well, United we stand, divided we fall. Red ties and blue ties fight over what they think America should be rather than what it has become. Let us remember that what it Has become is the result of ever increasing freedom, liberty, and justice for all.

    We are not a Christian nation, or a heterosexual one. We have no national language, we have no national preference for race or creed. Historically we are mostly this or that, but to truly believe in Freedom you must respect Every citizen’s right to do as they please as long as it doesn’t hurt anyone.

    Policy should never be based on religion, it should never favor one party over the other, it should never trample on the very rights we supposedly hold so dear.

    Posted by Raymoondo | December 16, 2023
  • Keep drinking the kook aid, Mike. Gulp, gulp

    Posted by Mark | November 11, 2023
  • Croats belive in power of US Constitution and WE THE PEOPLE

    Posted by zlatko piljak | October 01, 2023
  • On 30 July of this year, “Mark” posted, "we the people includes people of color, lgbtq, women, non-christians, and all other citizens that aren’t white males, despite what most of the white males who display “we the people” on their trucks would have you think. That group is just a subset of racist, misogynistic losers." Let me respond by first saying I don’t think I’ve ever heard anything more racist than that. I must have learned racism from “Mark” and those like him. The fact is that “We The People”, does mean everyone, to include us old white guys, or as “Mark” calls us, racist, misogynistic losers. The fact is that if it were not for old white guys with guns we would be having this conversation in some language other than English and we would be living in an America that was just another third world country (we aren’t far from that now, I might add). So, “Mark” weather you appreciate the liberties that have been secured for you by old white racist, misogynistic losers or not, YOU’RE WELCOME.

    Posted by Mike | September 28, 2023
  • I’m a wackadoodle dandy, a wackadoodle do or die

    Posted by Mike Debell | September 13, 2023
  • everyone.

    In 1776 when this nation was founded, “We The People” did not include everyone. Racial minorities, women, and people without property could not vote. But through a series of constitutional amendments, “We The People” has grown.

    I’m part of “We The People.” And so are you

    The nation at times has taken up arms over tyranny. Over the generations, threats have come from both outside and inside where freedom hung in the balance.

    “We The People” responded.

    Throughout generations, the Constitution has changed and has been strengthened. The “We The People” of America have fought to make the constitution more inclusive and to strive toward a more perfect union. It takes work.

    The U.S. Constitution grants “We The People” the right

    to peacefully protest their government, national or local. Recent months have seen that right taken to the streets. It is a right, a guarantee in the Constitution. That, too, is America. Something to think about during this Independence Day celebration.

    To me, much of what America means is “WE THE PEOPLE.”

    Posted by Rhystina | August 24, 2023
  • Having seen the comments, I believe it is crucial to the survival of the United States to decitizenize and deport communists. You are free to be communists, but not in my country.
    Is that radical enough for you?

    Posted by Mike DeBell | August 16, 2023
  • We the people includes people of color, lgbtq, women, non-Christians and all other citizens that aren’t white males, despite what most of the white males who display “we the people” on their trucks would have you think. That group is just a subset of racist, misogynistic losers.

    Posted by Mark | July 30, 2023
  • WE does not include all. It was intended for white Ethnic groups that claimed America as their home. It did not include people that was already there before they came. It did not include people they inslaved. If it did. Why would we have to go to war to give what was due to all that lived in This America if WE that meaning. Is for everyone?

    Posted by Shawn | July 17, 2023
  • Thank you for your dedication to our great USA. God bless you and our USA🙏✝️

    Posted by Judy | April 29, 2023
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