Happy Independence Day!
I hope the holiday finds you enjoying summer and celebrating your favorite way. Barbecues, picnics, and lazy days on the water are the order of the day.
History teaches us so much about our nation’s beginnings, but I got to thinking about the details. We all know the Declaration of Independence is the official document penned to separate “us” Americans from “them” Great Britons. We were at war and confident (enough) to put our ultimate intention in writing. But how long did it take? Who actually wrote it? And what does it do for us today? These were some questions I wanted answers to, and I figured I’d share in case you did as well.
I had questions and thought you might too.
I get it. History. Not so scintillating a topic for a romance writer to be wasting her time on, but I would argue. For what is sexiness anyway? A mindset. And what can put us in a better frame of mind than knowing that this is all “you.” All the choices, all the consequences, all the everything.
Freedom. That’s what’s sexy.
The Declaration of Independence took Thomas Jefferson seventeen days to write after receiving input from the other members of the Committee of Five - Roger Sherman, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, and Robert Livingston. The congressionally appointed group represented five of the thirteen colonies: Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts, and New York, respectively—Tommy J was from Virginia. (www.constitutionfacts.com)
Thomas Jefferson didn’t do it alone, and he didn’t only use the beliefs of the time. He was an enthusiast of the political philosophy of The Enlightenment—the idea that reason (or common sense) is the ultimate authority. Think John Locke (1632-1704), commonly known as the Father of Liberalism.
This answers questions 1 & 2. But what has the DOI done for us lately? www.brittanica.com lets us know in modern terms:
The Declaration of Independence states three basic ideas:
- God made all men equal and gave them the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.
- The main business of government is to protect these rights.
- If a government tries to withhold these rights, the people are free to revolt and to set up a new government.
So there you have it. The Declaration of Independence ensures that, as American citizens, we have ALL the rights. How wonderful our forefathers remembered to stick to fundamentals and allow a gratifying sensory experience.
We can go forth and live life, enjoy liberty (AKA Freedom) and pursue happiness.