Weekly Musings #3 We Hold These Truths…

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.

This single quote should fill every American great pride, honor, and value.  It is the unique passage in the world today.  It is the ideal representation of the mantra inspired by western Judeo-Christian philosophy. Three foundational truths are highlighted in this quote.

  • We derive our human rights from a power that surpasses any governing body.

The quote above only has meaning if there is something with higher power than the government. If the government is the end all be all, then our rights are subject to the will of a majority. It means that life and the pursuit of happiness are predicated on a benevolent and kind government. Which as a black person (pulling out the race card) is not true. Never has been, never will be. So this idea that the value of human life in America is not bound by an untrustworthy government but is affirmed forever by a Creator who is above Government. This is important because it claims that the individual is more powerful than the group.  The individual must be defended robustly and advocated for proudly and without fear.

  • Liberty and freedom are never subjected to the will of the government, but the government must preserve the individual’s rights.

Preserving the liberty and freedom of the individual a government must respect and not infringe on the power and rights of the individual. In order to realize this ideal, there have to be sound checks on the governing body. In America, this test is found in our Bill of Rights. These Bill of Rights give the individual the power to correct, change, criticize the government and provides the ability to protect themselves from all forms of oppression foreign and domestic. To take away, delegitimize, or forget their importance is equivalent to saying that individualism is terrible or at best unnecessary.

  • The Pursuit of happiness and happiness are not the same thing. The only right that we have to happiness is the freedom and ability to pursue it

With this foundational truth, the government does not have the strength, the power, or the right to provide happiness for you. The responsibility of the state is only to allow the individual to live their life as they see fit. The only caveat to this is when the lifestyle choices of the individual pursuing happiness cause harm and prevents other individuals from seeking their happiness. If the government tries to provide happiness for all the people, then it can only take from one group and give to another.  When you give the government the power to regulate your life, then you are diminishing the value of your right to pursue your happiness.

TL: DR Our rights and freedoms are derived not from Government but a Creator. This means that our value as individuals supersedes the will of the majority/government. To do anything that takes away from these truths that have built the American society is to shame all the progress that has been made in pursuit of these ideals.