In Congress, July 4th, 1776

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…

…We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these united Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. — And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

9 thoughts on “In Congress, July 4th, 1776

  1. Retired Spook July 4, 2018 / 9:51 am

    Ben Shapiro has an excellent, short piece at TownHall this morning about the purpose of the courts.

    The judicial branch was never meant to act as a superlegislature, using the verbiage of the Constitution in order to implement preferred policy prescriptions. In Federalist No. 78, Alexander Hamilton expressed the idea well: “The courts must declare the sense of the law; and if they should be disposed to exercise WILL instead of JUDGMENT, the consequence would equally be the substitution of their pleasure to that of the legislative body.” Substituting will for judgment would make the case for utterly dissolving the judicial branch.

    Yet, according to the Democrats, the Supreme Court should exercise will instead of judgment. The role of the court, according to Justice Sonia Sotomayor, is to help expedite change in our society: “Our society would be strait-jacketed were not the courts, with the able assistance of the lawyers, constantly overhauling the law and adapting it to the realities of ever-changing social, industrial and political conditions.” Justice Elena Kagan believes the same thing, which is why she constantly describes the Constitution as “abstract,” leaving her room to interpret it as poetry rather than statute.


    • Amazona July 4, 2018 / 12:41 pm

      Hooray for Ben Shapiro. He may be the answer to my endless carping about the Right not having a voice to explain itself.

  2. Retired Spook July 4, 2018 / 10:01 am

    And another excellent article also at TownHall by Erich Reimer about the difference between freedom and liberty.

    Essentially, it seems like “liberty” is a form of “freedom.” Liberty originally carried with it the implication of responsibility and duty, and attachment to a greater whole, whether that be a society or philosophical belief system. In contrast, freedom merely meant the raw ability to act and do as one wills.

    • Amazona July 4, 2018 / 12:42 pm

      I had never thought of a difference between liberty and freedom, but this makes sense. Fortunately, purely by accident, when I refer to the inevitable outcome of Leftist governance I usually include loss of personal liberty, not freedom.

      • Retired Spook July 4, 2018 / 12:54 pm

        I’ve often made the same distinction. “Personal” and “freedom” just don’t sound as good together as “personal” and “liberty.” It may be because we Conservatives often refer to personal responsibility, and responsibility and liberty go together as the author notes. You can’t really have liberty without a free society, but a free society in an of itself can be free to do both good and bad things.

  3. jdge1 July 5, 2018 / 9:29 pm

    Anyone have a favorite Supreme Court nominee? I’m tending toward Judge Amy Barrett. Her credentials are solid, she’s a constitutionalist on every case she weighed in on, that I’m familiar with, and her age provides a long term conservative voice. There are certainly others with solid backgrounds but Barrett is definitely one I could get behind.

    • Amazona July 5, 2018 / 10:40 pm

      I think she would be great, and for those who demand that the Court be “balanced” I think her age, her competence and her dedication to the Constitution would be a great balance to RBG.

      • M. Noonan July 5, 2018 / 11:24 pm

        The left sure hates her – I think she’s probably second-tier in Trump’s list given her recent appointment to the Circuit Court, but they are going after her in a big way. They are afraid of her – afraid, most of all, of a woman who will be able to articulately explain Originalist jurisprudence.

  4. jdge1 July 6, 2018 / 11:48 am

    I believe several on Trump’s list for Supreme Court are recent appointments to higher courts. Senator Mike Lee is being tossed around too, but that hardy seems likely given the delicate balance in the Senate.

    “The left sure hates her” – so much for tolerance and inclusion.

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