The Declaration of Independence On 1776 one of the founding fathers, Thomas Jefferson wrote the Declaration of Independence. Its main intention was to declare the thirteen colonies free and independent from the British crown who had been violating their rights since 1607 when the first colonists established in Jamestown, Virginia. Jefferson not only wrote the declaration for the colonists, but for also any country who has been currently suppressed by their ruler. Jefferson’s use of rhetorical appeals and organizational structure emphasizes all the crude acts that King George III passed through 1765-1776, and the actions that will motivate the colonists to fight back and become a country primarily built on freedom and self-sacrifice. The introduction of the Declaration of Independence illustrates a broad picture to encourage the colonists to refute against Great Britain. For example, when Jefferson begins with his opening remarks, he sets the ideology of separation by stating it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another (1-4). Jefferson generalizes to all people that oppressed countries have the right to revolt against despotic authority. It defines the revolutionary war of 1776 as an act of righteousness separation for the colonies from the King’s tyranny. The word necessary which Jefferson uses in his statement elaborates how the colonies have attempted to compromise with Great Britain, but the inevitable option is to fight against Britain to gain their freedom. In addition, Jefferson builds his previous argument by depicting how the separate and equal station to which the laws of nature and of nature’s God entitle them (6-7). Jefferson alludes to the Bible how God granted each human being value establishing that all men are created. He continues to imply how King George III has been oppressing the colonists’ natural rights, even though the king himself is not a supernatural being with the power to do so. The phrase nature’s God entitle them alludes to John Locke’s Second Treatise of government which outlines natural rights, that any person norm in the New World is granted with basic given rights. Jefferson’s use of diction implies a paradigm shift from a monarchy governed by corrupt rulers, to a republican-democracy ruled by the people. Furthermore, to create a wider contrast against Great Britain Jefferson states a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation(7-10). Jefferson uses a respectful tone to further distinguish the colonists from King George III himself. Jefferson is preparing to list the causes that Great Britain has done to influence the colonies name themselves as a separate country. Jefferson begins to explain the rights every single person must contain and why they must prepare for separation. Jefferson influences his ideas by commencing with the preamble, stating: 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 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 shown, 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 (11-39). Jefferson begins the preamble by expressingWe hold these truths to be self-evident, which illustrates another allusion based on John Locke’s enlightenment ideals as outlined by his second Treatise of government. Jefferson lists the following premises as inviolable principles, making a deep connection to the colonists of what the king has done to make their lives worse. In addition, Jefferson continues by saying that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their creator with certain unalienable Rights and among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Jefferson reveals that all men are born equal with natural rights given to them by God, that cannot be taken away or diminished. Thus establishing that God’s given rights cannot be usurped by a king, no matter how highly ranked the person is seen around the world. The declaration continues to say that governments are merely instituted to protect these inherent rights; governments have no more and no less duties than that. Protecting these rights may result in the government to expand beyond an absolute basic structure, serving the purpose to protect the rights of each constituent, whether being from other citizens, foreign countries, etc. Thus Jefferson believing that government has no purpose in everyday life if the people cannot protect those simple rights inherited from God. In addition, the document states that government has no more ability than the people who stand for it, implying that a government in reality is an extension of peoples’ beliefs, and not a separate entity. Jefferson believed that a country filled with liberty ruled the government and prospered; but a loss of balance in power would push a country towards a tyrannical state. The preamble later on states that the common people have the right to change or get rid of the government, providing that the reason is not light and transient. But for a change of government, there must be a long train of abuses and usurpations. This right to overthrow destructive governments was massively important to the founders , that they declared it not as a basic right, but as a civil duty of the people. After the preamble, Jefferson writes the indictment. Which serves as the list of grievances that have led the colonists to break apart from the British Crown. Jefferson begins by stating Such has been the patient sufferings of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government (39-42). The opening phrase serves as a bridge to connect the ideas elaborated in the preamble to the obstacles the colonists are facing during 1765-1776. In addition, there are a total of 27 grievances, which repeats the phrase he has(49-147) with the change of a following verb, such as refused, forbidden, called, dissolved, endeavored, made, erected, affected, combined, abdicated, plundered ,constrained, excited, etc.(49-147). The repetition of he has implies to the actions King George III had done to the colonies, to make wealthier. Specifically, in the list of grievances Jefferson alludes to the Quartering Act of 1765. Which enforced colonists to house British soldiers in barracks throughout the colonies, if the barracks were too small to house all the soldiers, then colonists were forced to house soldiers in their own homes. In addition, the Quartering Act also made colonies provide food and quarters (money) to the soldiers living in the barracks. Also, Jefferson implies the abuses involving King George III’s establishment of tyrannical authority instead of representative government. King George III interfered with the representative government by rejecting legislation proposed by the colonies, replacing colonial governments with appointed ministers. King George III exponentially grew his tyrannical authority by interfering with judicial processes and civil rights. He also made his judges dependent on him for their jobs and salaries, allowing him to make the judges follow every single rule he proposed to be more controlling over everything. Furthermore, King George III kept tyrannical control strictly on the colonies because he kept strong officers (red coats) in the colonies during times of peace, making the British’s military power superior over the civil government, and forcing the colonists to support the military by paying the King’s taxes. The Denunciation immediately follows the indictment, as a restatement of which the Founders had been patient enough with Britain. In this section, the Founders had already petitioned and informed Britain how much King George III has oppressed the colonies, and overall the problem of humanity of Britain. Yet Britain ignored these compromises, and established the colonies in rebellion as a prime enemy against the Crown. The section also implies how the founders did not want to separate from Britain’s rule, but they had no choice since the king did not want to compromise with the colonies. Furthermore, this whole section implies a tone of sadness, depicting that neither party wanted to drift, but it was inevitable that these two countries will drift apart based on different ideologies. Overall, the only action left is to declare permanent separation from Great Britain. Lastly, Jefferson ends the Declaration of Independence with his conclusion implying that the colonies are independent states and that they would not handle Britain’s actions anymore. For example, Jefferson makes the colonies seem as individual states by saying these united colonies are and of right ought to be free and independent states (183-185) and by explaining 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 (190-194). Jefferson ensures to the colonists that by signing the Declaration of Independence, then the colonies would declare their freedom from Britain. Jefferson exhibits all the actions and rights independent states could do, while not being oppressed. Influencing the colonists more to stand up together against Britain’s tyranny over the colonies. Furthermore, the declaration ends by stating we mutually pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes and our sacred honor (197-199). The Founders of the declaration, were making it known to Britain that they will be a stronger nation than their tyrannical government. Overall, the founding fathers wanted to provide reasons why the colonists needed to separate from their suppressed ruler. In conclusion, Jefferson’s use of structural organization and figurative language, emphasized how the colonists have had enough of Britain’s authority; making separation the only possible way to make the colonies into their country and not become like Britain. After the release of the Declaration of Independence, Great Britain declared the colonies in rebellion and ordered over 50,000 redcoats to stop the colonists. But the colonists refused to surrender starting the Revolutionary War which lasted from 1775-1783. Over 17,000 militia soldiers died serving the cause for separation almost losing the war until France helped the colonies defeat the British. Leaving the colonies free at once from Britain and naming their amount of land the United States of America.
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