Wednesday, September 14, 2005

The Declaration of Independence.

When was the last time you read the Declaration of Independence? Have you ever taken the time to read it and comprehend it? I had the pleasure of being interviewed by a local talk show host who had memorized it in its entirety and was working on the Constitution. How many of you consider yourselves a Patriot but have not taken the time to understand? Hopefully the answer is none, but if even one does exist, this is your opportunity to rectify the situation.

The document begins, “When in the course of human events…” but what is it saying? It says that when the time comes for us to separate ourselves from a governing body, proper respect to others requires that we explain why.

It continues, “We hold these truths to be self-evident…”, in the modern vernacular, “Well, Duh!” “…that all men (women included) are created equal.” Note the word “created.” We all start out naked but what we do after that is mostly up to us. It is also a shame and a national embarrassment that after using this phrase, the Constitution defined some men as “three fifths.”

“…that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.” Note the word “pursuit.” This implies no guarantee, however, many seem to want to remove this word and complain that they did not receive an adequate hand-out.

An adequate explanation and discussion of the entire Declaration goes far beyond this medium. My intent is merely to peak your interest and send you to the document to read for yourself, but let me make one more comment. Most of it discusses the “repeated injuries and usurpations” of the current King of Great Britain. I suggest you read this list before you make another accusation about the corruption within our form of government or suggest any changes. After all, not even Clinton was that bad.

The declaration makes a statement that every leader should understand but few do, “deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed,” or, the power always comes from the people. Without the consent of the people, whether through will or compulsion, the leader has no power. With this in mind, it is the responsibility of the governed to be informed. Last year, during the election process, my 10 year old son was asking how our election system worked. I gave him a copy of the U.S. Constitution and, with a little incentive, he read it in one day. If a 10 year old can read and understand it, so can you. So, take the time and review the documents that created the greatest nation on Earth.

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