The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution

I wrote the following response on a wonderful blog written by Dr. Edrene McKay from Arkansas which you will find the link to below as well as my response to her latest entry:

“Don’t Demonize Individuals, Demand Systemic Change”

the following is the last part of her entry:

Ron Paul and I probably wouldn’t agree on the role of government. He tends to see limited government as the answer, but our world has become so complex and there are so many powerful interests (e.g., monopolistic insurance companies) that a government that is willing to take vigorous action on behalf of the people, when it is impossible for them to act efficaciously on their own, is clearly necessary. What we need is a set of principles to guide our actions. Ron Paul suggests going back to the Constitution. I think a better starting point would be the Declaration of Independence, but this time we have to mean it:

“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 to these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to 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 affect their safety and happiness.”

Perhaps it’s time for another revolution. I don’t mean Minute Men and muskets, but a complete overhaul of our governance system. The incentives need to make it possible, desirable, and even necessary to serve the public interest and impossible to serve powerful special interests. How will that happen? A vigilant public that analyzes the underlying faults in the system, without demonizing individuals, and demands reform. A more vigilant press would help too.

my response:

Dear Edrene

What a great blog and I hope you will become inspired to write more often, you have a gift for it.

Your focus on the Declaration is quite spot on in illuminating the dream.

Van Jones is quoted as saying:
“Dr. King didn’t get famous giving a speech that said, “I have a complaint.” It’s time for us to start dreaming again and invite the country to dream with us. We don’t have any “throw away” species, nations, or children. We must birth a global green economy strong enough to lift people out of poverty.”

The Declaration of Independence was and still is that dream waiting to find its way into the heart and conscious of the People of America.
That dream of “Life, Liberty and Pursuit of Happiness” was given a real meaning of commitment on the bloody battlefields of the American Revolutionary War and codified in the ratification of the Constitution of the United States of America.

The journey of that dream has been long, arduous and at times extremely violent. New members of the Human family have continued to be added to that dream, but only as we all come to live it with a respect to all.

I have come to find the hope of that dream in the Constitution, the rule of just law. It was the final parting gift to “us and our posterity” that would keep alive the “Dream”. A final substantive act to preserve and protect the dream enshrined in the preamble beginning with “We the People” not Me the Person.

Thank you again for sharing your thoughts and insights for it has helped me to reestablish my relation to this foundational document “The Declaration of Independence”


1 Comment for “The Declaration of Independence and the Constitution”

  1. good stuff.. !! both of you are good writers. and I agree with what you’ve wrote… excellent post..

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