As part of the California Libertarian Party writers bureau California Perspective I did a special OP/ED for the 4th of July because the issue date would be the 4th of July. The OP/ED orientation was the Declaration of Independence. The Coastal Post was gracious enough to publish.
Please read this reminder of why the Founding Fathers said what they did when declaring the Declaration and slightly updated to reflect todays issues.
America-Yours, Mine, Ours
http://www.coastalp ost.com/06/ 08/26.html
Coastal Post Online
MARIN COUNTY'S NEWS MONTHLY - FREE PRESS
(415)868-1600 - (415)868-0502(fax) - P.O. Box 31, Bolinas, CA, 94924
America-Yours, Mine, Ours
by Ron Getty
Two hundred thirty years ago Thomas Jefferson authored the Declaration of Independence, and with representatives of the 13 colonies signed it, thereby laying the cornerstone for America to become a free nation. Liberty had a price as 4,400 Americans died and another 6,200 were wounded on Revolutionary War battlefields.
"When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation."
The 13 colonies severed the royal governorships of Great Britain and Americans declared themselves independent of King George III's rule. This dissolution was caused by internal taxes, trade tariffs, military impositions and the pitiless ignominy of no representation in Parliament.
"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."
Governments are created by agreement among associations of people who freely give their consent to create a limited government to protect the peoples' lives, property and rights.
"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."
No government when formed, with the consent of the governed, should abuse the limited powers the people have given to the government to protect their lives, property and rights. No government through its elected, appointed or governmental employees can ignore the people who gave their consent to be governed.
"Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed."
However, no government once created, and consented to by the governed, should be arbitrarily dissolved. The dissolution of a government through revolutionary war or a civil war is an act not to be taken lightly or without extremely serious discussion, thought and forbearance.
"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."
We, the people, support a government which has as its fundamental cornerstones honor, integrity and righteousness. We, the people, support a government which esteems civil rights and believes in decency, respect and individual liberty. These hallmarks represent a government formed of the people, by the people and for the people, and ultimately responsible to the people who gave their consent to be governed.
"That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States... And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor."
The Founding Fathers united in their belief that independent American states would correct the impositions visited upon Americans by Great Britain. The Founders then gave birth to an American democratic republic.
In so doing, the Founding Fathers created a free nation, which for two centuries has stood as a beacon of democracy and a bulwark against tyranny. A free nation, which represents to all people suffering from untoward subjugation a dream for a right to life, liberty and pursuit of happiness.
Independence Day is a reminder for Americans that we have freely given our consent for a government to protect our lives, property and rights. However, as Thomas Jefferson stated, "My reading of history convinces me that government is best which governs least."
Therefore, we the people, can have our lives, property and rights protected and still have a limited government which governs the least; and this would be the best government.
Ron Getty is the senior staff member of a tax attorney with his practice located in San Francisco. His background includes an electrical engineering degree and 30 years of sales, marketing and advertising with small to large corporations. A Vietnam Veteran of Chu Lai - I Corps, he brings personal perspectives on veterans and their treatment by the government.