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The Declaration of Independence - Essay Example

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The Declaration of Independence was a document penned on July 4, 1776 by the then Continental Congress announcing war against the British empire from the American states as the British Empire failed to meet the needs of the American states and hence sought independence and not…
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The Declaration of Independence
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The social nature of the Declaration of Independence School What was the use of the document? The Declaration of Independence was a document penned on July 4, 1776 by the then Continental Congress announcing war against the British empire from the American states as the British Empire failed to meet the needs of the American states and hence sought independence and not wanted to form a part of the British Empire (US Department of the Historian).
John Adams wanted to make a resolution during early 1776 and hence created a committee. The tasks was entailed to Thomas Jefferson and passed on July 4th 1776 by the Continental Congress. The main use of the Declaration was that since the needs of the people were not fulfilled, the people could revolt against the British rule. During the early part of 1776, John Adams made a resolution for preparing a Declaration, and hence he created a committee to develop the same. Thomas Jefferson was given the task of drafting the Declaration and finally on July 4th 1776, the Declaration was passed by the Continental Congress (Library of Congress). This Declaration was a justification of Independence from the British Empire and was addressed to King George III. It claimed for several rights for the people of American such as natural, legal and revolutionary rights in case the government could not meet their needs. It was the base to marginalize people towards motivating them to meet their goals. In the future, the Declaration was used as a mean to interpret and develop the Constitution of the US (US Department of the Historian).
What is the social nature?
Rousseau’s social contract theory has influenced the creation of the Declaration. According to the social contract theory, men are in an agreement with their government and the government would be having certain roles and responsibilities to their people. The basis for this theory is that humans have left a natural living environment and have joined society. According to Jefferson, he has mentioned that men have governed powers to the government and when this form of government becomes destructive then people have the right to dismiss. In this way, the Declaration tends towards the social contract and nature theory (E-notes).
What are the issues?
There were several problems noted in the Declaration. Firstly, the British king failed to create any law for the common good of the American people and hence Declaration has to be made for independence. The second problem mentioned was that taxes were imposed on the Americans without their consent. Thirdly, the British were making unjust use of power of the military. These ideas were being reflected in the Declaration and later in the US Constitution (Yahoo).
Why were the founders compelled to declare independence?
The main reason for declaring independence was that the British government and the King were unable to meet the needs of the people of America. The drafters of the Declaration were strongly influenced by the philosophers and ideologists and also by important events that took place around that time (such as the John Locke Theory, work Titled ‘Common sense’ in 1776 and the Act of Abjuration, 1958). Jefferson who was from Virginia was massively impressed with the Virginia Declaration, and this formed an important part of the Declaration of Independence. Another reason why the colonists sought to declare independence was that they were not represented in the British Parliament and even though the colonists were heavily taxed and contributing to the treasury of Britain they could not frame rules for themselves. The colonists felt strongly that in case they needed to fulfill their needs, they had to themselves form a strong and a much effective government (MCWDN).
Works Cited
E-notes. What Is The Social Contract? 9 October 2011. 21 April 2012 .
Irwin. Chapter 2 - Influences Upon The Declaration of Independence. Scribd, 2010.
MCWDN. The Declaration of Independence. 2012. 20 April 2012 .
US Department of Archives. Bill of Rights: The Virginia Declaration of Rights. 2010. 20 April 2012 .
US Department of the Historian. The Declaration of Independence, 1776. 2010. 20 April 2012 .
Yahoo. Fixes to the Declaration of Independence in the Constitution. 16 April 2008. 21 April 2011 . Read More
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