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4 Ways Thomas Jefferson Changed America for the Better

Posted by Justin on

American history is filled with revolutionary and noteworthy figures, such as George Washington and Benjamin Franklin. But Thomas Jefferson was also a key player, in both the years leading up to the American Revolution and the new government itself. 

Let’s take another look at 4 ways Thomas Jefferson changed America, in case you’ve forgotten since your last history class!

4. During the Revolution

We Americans already know the vital role that Thomas Jefferson played in the Revolution. Without his guiding hand and political ideas, it’s quite likely that America would have turned into a much more federal-focused country. 

Jefferson was a key advocate for states’ rights and ensured that the future legislature of the country would be bicameral, meaning there would be two houses: one focused on equal representation for each state and one focused on representation based on population. 

In this way, Jefferson certainly earns his title of Founding Father, as he was one of the key minds that help to shape our Constitution and country as it is today.

3. His Separation of Church and State

One of the most important political ideas that Jefferson ever had was the separation of church and state. This was a radical idea back in Jefferson’s time, even though most of us take this freedom for granted. 

Remember that many of the original American settlers were those who wanted freedom from religious persecution back in Europe. Jefferson mandating that the future United States government should be secular (which means it should not concern itself with the religion of its citizens) secured the right for all of us to worship however we please. 

Indeed, freedom of religion is one of the most important rights we have as Americans. Billions of people around the world do not have the same rights as we do.

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2. A Momentous Presidency

Thomas Jefferson eventually became the third president of the United States, after George Washington and John Adams. He had a mostly successful first term as President and a less successful second term, but he regardless left a big impact on the office and maintained the two-term limit that Washington and Adams had set up before him. 

Among Jefferson’s biggest impacts was keeping the United States out of the war between France and Britain, which was heating up due to Napoleon's imperious aspirations at the time. He also stopped the piracy of United States ships across the Atlantic.

1. His Louisiana Purchase

But Jefferson’s biggest impact as President by far was the Louisiana Purchase, which he got for a very low price from the French government. This Purchase effectively doubled the size of the new nation and allowed the United States to continue expanding almost all the way to the West Coast. Without this Purchase, the United States may have ended up a much smaller country than it is today.

Few men can say that they had more of an impact on American history than Thomas Jefferson. 

We can learn a lot about his dedication to equality, states’ rights, and freedom. Maybe we should apply his ethics to today's government more often! 

Thank you for reading, stay strong patriots.   

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