The Declaration of Independence was authored by Thomas Jefferson with the assistance of a congress appointed committee. At the time it was written, Jefferson had included a charge against King George III that accused him of slavery. The congress had however purged this charge form the document on two grounds. First, some of the delegates felt that slavery did not violate the rights of humanity. They therefore thought that there was no valid charge. Second, the Congress based on the first point wanted a unanimously accepted document (Spalding, 2007). This point is thought provoking on various grounds.
First, the point highlights the importance of the Declaration of Independent. Due to its importance, the congress saw the need to adopt a document that was accepted by everyone else in the Congress. The Congress saw the time of adopting the document as a very important moment for America and thought that the document should have been one that was accepted in whole by the whole of America.
Secondly, the removal of that charge makes it understood how far back America was then and how far ahead it has moved now. The removal shows that America was still ruled by individuals who thought it was ethical, human and legal to hold others against their will as a source of free labor. The fact that America has since embraced a form of governance that does not accommodate slavery gives a positive light to the entire document. It also highlights the fact that America was far from giving liberty to every American at the time the document was signed.
In conclusion, the
article “Independence Forever: Why America Celebrates the 4th of
July” indicates the position of America with regard to slavery at the point the
“Declaration of Independence” was written. It also shows how far ahead America
has moved. The article is also a great show of how the Congress sometimes has
to agree on weighty matters.
Spalding, M. (2007). Independence Forever: Why America Celebrates the Fourth of July. The Heritage Foundation. Retrieved 4 September 2014, from http://www.heritage.org/research/reports/2007/06/independence-forever-why-america-celebrates-the-fourth-of-july
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