A Radical Idea Revisited

The Declaration of Independence was a radical document because for millennia mankind had been ruled by monarchs, caesars, tsars, or similar forms of dynastic oligarchies determined by bloodline.  The universally accepted school of thought was that kings, queens, emperors or caesars were annointed by God, or even gods themselves.  Only monarchs or nobilities approved by monarchs owned anything.  They “allowed” the “common people” to work the land as serfs, indentured servants or as slaves.  But “common people” were never “allowed” to own property.  All they produced belonged to the king and was his for the taking.
America’s founding fathers disavowed this view of society.  They declared that all men are created equal, that in effect, all men are kings.  That they are endowed by their Creator with certain inalienable rights.  Among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.  They declared that men could govern themselves without a monarch or an oligarchy ruling over them.  This was a radical departure from centuries old norms.  They established a system that allowed “common people” to own property without first obtaining permission from a “divine” ruler.  Anyone could come to America, work hard, earn and save money and buy (own) property free of government interference.  They knew that if they failed in this endeavor, they would all hang.  Yet, “with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence” they pledged to each other their Lives, their Fortunes and their sacred Honor. 
The Declaration of Independence was the mission statement for the Constitution.
Yes, the Constitution established an inperfect government, which still allowed slavery.  At that point in history, the original 13 colonies couldn’t have formed one nation capable of maintaining a semblance of unity had they not reached the 3/5ths compromise.  But they were wise when they wrote the Constitution.  They ensured that the Constitution could be ammended, so that in time slavery and other injustices could be altered through an orderly process which provides change that enjoyed overwhelming bi-partisian support within a united nation that hadn’t descended into mob rule.
The reason I’m so vigorously opposed to Socialism and Communism is that this school of thought is in direct opposition to the uniquely American concept that anyone and everyone has the right to own private property.  How would you like it if, after years of struggle, you finally owned your own home, then government “informed” you that it didn’t belong to you, that it belonged to “all the people” and you had to let strangers live there whether you liked it or not?  If an all powerful, big government oligarchy is allowed to sieze private property (as in the concept of “social justice” or “economic justice”, which is forced redistribution of wealth with hostility towards private property), America is dead.


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