United States Declaration of Independence
What is the Declaration of Independence?
The Declaration of Independence of the United States is a legal document written by Thomas Jefferson in 1776 right after the Revolutionary War against Britain. It states that the American colonies are finally free from British rule and it describes a man’s place in society. It is divided into political, economic and social aspects.
Political Aspect of the Declaration of Independence
The political aspect of this document deals mainly with the government. People have the right to overthrow the existing government if it becomes tyrannical and too destructive. They then have the right to establish a new type of government. To ensure that the government does not have too much power it should be broken up into several parts that have equal power. It must pass the laws that are just. Government must represent the people and not control them. It must protect the rights of the people and not take them away. It must not do anything without the consent of the governed.
Before the American Revolution the colonies were under the control of a British Monarch who had total control of the people. The colonists did not like this absolute rule. So, after they won the Revolutionary War they sought out to create a new form of government. They established a republican form of government where there was rule by the people. This type of government was known as a Representative Democracy.People elected representatives who would govern the country. The power within the government was divided among three branches each having equal amounts of power. No one branch could ever overthrow the others. This government was just and it met the needs of the people.
Social Aspect of the Declaration of Independence
Another aspect of the Declaration of Independence is the social one. “All men are created equal” and they should remain equal. People should have equal protection under the laws and cannot be discriminated against no matter what color, or race they are. No state law can discriminate against others. This is part of the equal protection of the 14thamendment to the U.S. Constitution. People are born with certain inalienable rights that are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. They cannot be taken away without due process of the law. This is also part of the 14th amendment. Troops cannot be quartered in people’s homes and neighborhoods. In times of peace standing armies cannot be brought to people’s homes and neighborhoods without the consent of the legislators. They must be protected from invasion. They cannot be deprived of a trial by jury. War cannot be waged against the people. People cannot be denied the right to migrate to this country. They cannot be denied citizenship or naturalization. This is also part of the 14th amendment. People should not be forced to become captives on the high seas to fight against their friends and execute them. People cannot be accused or tried for a crime that they did not commit.
Economic Aspect of the Declaration of Independence
The last aspect of the Declaration of Independence is an economic one. Taxes cannot be imposed on people without their consent. This is a big change since under British rule the American colonists were heavily taxed. They had to produce goods and send them to England for which they had to pay a tariff. Trade cannot be cut off with other parts of the world. This is also a big change since the colonies were not allowed to trade with the other parts of the world. They were only allowed to trade with mother England.