When in the course of history it becomes necessary for people to cast off archaic political bands, and to assert the equal rights each person is entitled to by the laws of nature and God, respect for the good opinion of mankind requires that they explain why such action is necessary.
We believe these truths are self-evident. We believe that all men are created equal. We believe they have natural rights, and that their inherent rights cannot be taken from them. Whether people believe in a Creator or not, we believe that these rights include life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. Men create governments and consent to give them certain powers in order to protect and secure these rights for themselves. Whenever any government jeopardizes this goal, people have the right to alter or abolish it, and to institute new government founded on those principles and to give it the powers they think will best protect and serve their safety and happiness. Prudence dictates that long standing governments should not be changed for trivial or fleeting reasons, and experience has shown that people are more likely to tolerate evil, while it is tolerable, than to change a familiar government. But when there is a long history of abuse and disobedience, which clearly shows a pattern of the government overstepping its limits and depriving citizens of their liberty and heritage, it is their right and their duty to change their government and provide new safeguards for their future security. Americans have patiently suffered, and now it is time for them to reclaim their birthright. The history of the government is a history of repeated failures, lies, and usurpations that demonstrate that it is no longer a government of the people, by the people, and for the people. To prove this, here are some facts for earnest people to consider.
The government has established elaborate districts and election laws designed to preserve the dominance of two interchangeable political parties. With rare exceptions, all of our representatives and government officials are loyal to these two political parties. Even though one-third of Americans are politically independent and almost everyone is unhappy with the results produced by these two parties, they maintain complete control of our government.
The government over spends every year, and refuses to balance its budget. It has created debts and obligations that threaten our security and prosperity and that will burden future generations from birth. To support its overspending, the government borrows extensively from countries that may not have America’s best interest at heart and spends today the money it promised the people it would save for tomorrow.
The government forces the people to use false money so that it and its friends can surreptitiously take wealth from us. It uses our wealth to glorify itself and to buy our allegiance with countless programs operated under the guise of fairness, progress, or safety. Baseless money is the root of profiteering, economic instability, and inflation that hurts the very people the government claims to be helping.
The government has created an indecipherable tax code that cannot be applied fairly. It creates tax rebates and insists that we should be grateful for its indulgence.
The government passes legislation that will have sweeping consequences for all Americans by cutting outrageous and obviously unfair deals, and approves laws written by and for special interests without reading them. The government exempts itself from laws it imposes on the rest of us.
The government regulates our food, the air, the water, farming, education, energy use, healthcare, housing and homeownership, business, industry, communications, labor, transportation, foreign policy, war and peace, and the currency. Every year it issues volumes of complicated new rules that often conflict with state rules, stifle competition, and interfere with common sense, innovation, and individual freedom. It manages with each new crisis, real or exaggerated, to expand its power. It can imprison and take the property of anyone who fails to pay for its services. It owns one-fifth of the land, and has a nationwide system of courts, attorneys, police, and prisons to enforce its laws and protect its interests.
According to the President’s Web site, “There are hundreds of federal agencies and commissions…” There are only three explanations for this state of affairs: we are savage people that must be restrained; we are stupid people incapable of solving our own problems; or the people who run the government love power.
Many patriots feared the second constitution would produce the
same evils they had just fought to end. Time
has demonstrated that either the Constitution authorized the same or worse abuses, or it
is powerless to prevent them.
Government programs are always more expensive than originally estimated, and even failed or obsolete programs are continued.
A small number of people run the corporations and unions one day and then run the government the next day. They can’t be objective under those circumstances or serve the best interests of the people. They serve only themselves and their friends.
The government is giving and lending the public’s money to private companies to ensure success and profit. If the goods and services provided by these companies are worthwhile, then the people running these businesses should be able to succeed without favors from the government.
The government is bailing out other countries, and the central bank does not have to show the public how it uses our money.
The government enters into treaties, contracts, and relationships with foreign entities, and relinquishes authority to international bodies, undermining America’s sovereignty.
The government has ruled that it can take private land from one owner and give it to another private owner if it prefers the new owner’s plans for the property.
The government won't allow dying people to smoke marijuana, but it says you are free to choose an abortion.
The government's current prohibition is fueling lawlessness, turmoil, and corruption, here and abroad, just like the last prohibition did. Despite the mayhem and the humiliation it causes, the government persists in trying to control foolish and unhealthy behavior by jailing scores of otherwise innocent people. Its approach discredits the law, and has given the land of the free the world's largest prison population.
We no longer have orderly militias, but we have many laws that infringe on our right to keep and bear arms for our own security. History's greatest atrocities were committed by armed governments, not armed people.
The government is advising Americans to spy on each other. Its agents violate the rights of travelers daily, and assault children, the sick, and the dying. Its money and influence are gradually transforming the police into an apparatus capable of controlling us.
The government’s military spending, not including the current wars, is equal to the military spending of the rest of the world combined. Why? We have oceans on either side of us, a mostly unpopulated wilderness to the north, a nation to the south barely able to defend itself against criminal gangs, and millions of people who love freedom.
The government has given us a War on Terror, a War on Drugs, and a War on Poverty. None of these wars were ever won.
The government tells us that millions of Americans need help, and it has numerous programs to provide them the necessities of life. It does this at the same time that billions of dollars are spent every month to employ people overseas and millions of people, many at great personal risk, come here legally and illegally. Most of the people who come here find work and shelter, raise their families, and are grateful for the opportunities and freedoms denied them in their own lands.
Those that come here illegally are often swindled and abused, live in deplorable conditions and fear, and never become Americans like our grandparents did. Those that come here legally are often subjected to delays and bureaucratic absurdities while trying to become Americans. The government is planning to sweep this under the rug again by re-forming the law.
The government has given itself the power to watch us, track us, and listen to us without independent judicial approval. It is developing new methods to monitor, track, and examine everyone without probable cause.
The government meddles in the political affairs of other countries, supports oppressive regimes, and recently used surrogates and secret prisons to do things that can’t be done legally. History shows that this behavior only creates resentment. A good reputation and friendship are just as important as security and freedom.
The government is indefinitely holding people without charges and without trial, and has identified Americans, who have not been charged or convicted of any crime, for assassination. The President has been given the power to declare Americans outlaws, depriving them of due process. These are the practices of dictators and kings, not a nation of laws.
The government fights undeclared wars. If we find it necessary to defend ourselves, then Congress should have the integrity and courage to declare war as required by its constitution.
The government has given itself the authority to wage war at any time and in any place. Unfettered authority appears to have resulted in unending war. This will enrich arms suppliers, but will surely lead to our nation's downfall.
The government has been at war for the past 15 years. All it has to show for it are a few heads on pikes, a mountain of debt, the wounded souls and maimed bodies of our countrymen, and everyone’s suspicion that AMERICA no longer exists.
The government trumpets virtue and decency and sacrifice to the people while pursuing power and decadence and privilege for itself and its friends.
For many years, we have forewarned the government of the problems associated with its growth, only to be told that we need still more government. A government that continuously grabs power and begins to take on the characteristics that define a tyranny is not fit to be the government of free people.
Nor have we ignored our fellow citizens. We have warned them of the dangers of this creeping intrusion into our lives and of the accumulation of power. We have reminded them why people came here and the circumstances under which this nation was created. We have appealed to their sense of fairness and open-mindedness, and have appealed to our common interest to reject these efforts that will inexorably undermine our connections and mutual trust. They have turned a deaf ear to the voice of reason and kinship, and our efforts have often been met with accusations of heartlessness and bigotry or the insinuation that we should be silent because our words might incite violence. Freedom is a blessing, and only tyrants fear dissent. Despite all that, we consider all sincere Americans friends.
We, therefore, believers in a just and dignified existence,
in general accord, proclaiming our best intentions to the Supreme Judge of the
world, do solemnly publish and declare in our name and by our authority, that
we are by right free and independent.
That we are released from all loyalty to the government, and that all
political connection between it and us is and should be terminated. As free and independent people, we reclaim
our lives free from the corruption that inevitably infects men’s hearts whenever they
undertake to rule other men and repossess complete power to act and do all things
that able people may rightly do. For the
support of this declaration, with confidence in the protection of Providence,
we pledge to each other our lives, our fortunes, and our sacred Honor.
“When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty.” – Thomas Jefferson