Lord of the Sword, on 30 April 2013 - 01:31 PM, said:
Actually you are part right and partially wrong. Not to take this thread to far off topic, but the Declaration was indeed written to justify our own Revolution. That much is correct. But, within the text of the Declaration are the
Actually, we did. Until the declaration was written, there was no right to liberty. In fact, it was written because we were breaking away from England. The declaration was the way the founding fathers went about beginning their revolution...Which, in the eyes of England, was illegal.
beliefs that "all men are created equal". It doesn't say all Englishmen are created equal or all American men are created equal, it states pretty clearly that ALL men are created equal.
When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.--That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, --That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
This happens to be one of my favorite topics, so I am going to go into it. The Declaration wasn't really new, Magna Carta really set the stage for the Declaration. So, Americans didn't invent Liberty. But, regardless of the genesis of the Declaration, the truth is in the text. The preamble is deliciously revolutionary, but it isn't revolutionary because it applies solely to the American Revolution. The declaration is revolutionary because the basis of it is predicated on the "Rights of men" and that governments are instituted to protect to god-given rights of men. Not the other way around.
In fact, the Founders were very aware of just how far reaching the Declaration was and were careful to construct a Constitution where there were checks and balances so the people never felt they had to revolt against the new government, using the very same document and ideal that was expressed in the Declaration. It was that far reaching a document. many say that the Declaration was revolutionary, and the Constitution was anti-revolutionary, and it had to be because the Declaration told all men they could resit the government. It told all men that they were endowed with certain inalienable rights, among them Life, LIBERTY and the pursuit of happiness.
The declaration wasn't just something that applied to the United States, which wasn't even in existence at the time of its writing. No, the declaration was a statement for all men and all governments, AND is one of the reasons why I feel the USA has become the great nation it is now. We believe in the rights of all men. We say so in our very own declaration and we have fought many wars in the name of Liberty. Like it or not, the Declaration is applicable to ALL men, because if it isn't, then it is a lie. [and I personally do not think it was or is a lie].
All men [and women of course] are created equal.
All wo/men are endowed with certain inalienable rights, by their creator.
All governments are in existence to defend the Liberty of men and to secure these rights to all men and women and exist for no other reason.
This was the greatness of the Declaration, and it was great because it was breathtaking in its reach and NOT limited to the 13 colonies.
I know this sounded a little preachy, and I don't mean it to be, I just have really studied [and written on] the Declaration, and its relationship to the Constitution. I would agree in most instances that the Constitution is indeed only applicable to US citizens. It is the law of the land, and I believe laws need to have a jurisdiction to be administered fairly. BUT, the Declaration is universal in its principles. It has to be. It was intended to be by the Founders and for very good reasons. They were justifying a revolution after all, and the did a damn fine job of it for us, and for the world. The document justifies ANY revolution based on its principles, and therefore applies to all men and women.
end of lecture.. LOL