Friday, July 4, 2008

Declaration of Independence

On this fine July 4, 2008 we celebrate by displaying this photograph of the original Declaration of Independence. If you look at the original document today, the thing you notice is that the words have become faded, and are barely readable.

Unfortunately, these words have not just faded on the document, but have faded in our lives, our hearts, and our culture. These words that burned in the hearts of our Founding Fathers have become almost forgotten today. I invite you to join me today in reading and renewing in our hearts the powerful words that were the birth of our country. Below, I include the first several paragraphs of this powerful document:
IN CONGRESS, July 4, 1776.
The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America,
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. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.--Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.

Note that our Founding Fathers believed that we were Created, that we were Created Equal, that our rights are Unalienable, because they come From God. The Founding Fathers believed that these Unalienable rights included a Right to Life, a Right to Liberty, and a Right to Pursue Happiness.


  1. People today think that happiness is a right . . . not the case . . . PURSUIT of happiness is a right, achieving it takes effort on your part

  2. I have just shed man tears. This touched my heart and soul. Your blog is great, pictures are great but what I enjoy most is your take on things.
    Thoughtful and thought provoking. Happy 4th of July, our country is worth saving again and again.

  3. This wonderful document should be required reading (with analysis) for every child before they graduate from high school.

    We are under assalt from within and without in this country. There are a number of groups and beliefs from the outside, but the real danger is from within. Apathy and self absorption threaten to destroy the moral and national fabric of the USA in a way that mirrors the 1920's. The terrible depression of the thirties and then WW II awoke the country's national vigor and brought us up to our potential resulting in 30 years of unparalled prosperity.

    Hopefully we will not need another depression (oops, we may be there already) or a massive war (oops, we are there already) to get us all together as a country again.

    A thankful Fourth to everyone!

  4. Required Reading? I would be suprised is such a document would be allowed in the public schools today. Talking about a Creator and all, I dont think it would be politically correct. Best to brush it under the rug.

  5. I read recently that July 4th was the day the document was ratified, but that most states did not receive and/or have public readings until the 8th or later, and it was actually signed by John Hancock on the 2nd. Although we celebrate on the 4th because that's the date on the document, I agree that the principles and ideals in the Declaration should be in our minds every day of the year.