Shays's Rebellion Questions and Answers

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What does Shay's Rebellion suggest about the challenges after the American Revolution that would influence the direction of the U.S. Constitution?

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It is true that this rebellion highlighted the need for a stronger central government.  However, it is even more important to point out that the rebellion highlighted the need (in the minds of the elite) for less democracy.  One of the major things that the rebellion suggested was that America was too democratic.  The Constitution was written (in part) to mitigate the influence that the people could have on the government.

In the time leading up to Shays's Rebellion, states were passing all sorts of laws meant to help people (especially farmers) who were in debt.  These laws were pretty radical at times (mandatory debt forgiveness, for example) and they scared the elite.  These laws made it very difficult to build a good economy.  Why, for example, would anyone lend money if the government might step in and say the money did not need to be paid back?  Without lending, the economy dies.

The point is that democracy was making the government do stupid things.  The people were asking...

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