“The Declaration of Independence and the Struggle for Equality DBQ”
“In what way and to what extent does the Declaration of Independence serve as a benchmark for the actions of disenfranchised or otherwise oppressed citizens of the United States of America?”
The Declaration of Independence, since July 4th, 1776, has continued to always become a guideline to protect those who are oppressed. “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,”” (Doc. A) sets the standards on what the United States of America is all about; equality. From the Report of American Horse by D.F. Royer on November 27, 1890 to the “Reminder Day” for Homosexual Rights on July 4, 1968, the Declaration of Independence continues to be the anchor document for many other documents to support those who are tyrannized from their rights.
In the Constitution of the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery and the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully Held in Bondage of 1787, President of the Society, Benjamin Franklin states, “It having pleased the Creator of the world, to make of one flesh, all the children of men – it becomes them to consult and promote each other’s happiness, as members of the same family, however diversified they may be, by color, situation, religion, or different states of society.” (Doc. B). Mr. Franklin talks about how if we are to please God, we all need to act as one huge family despite whatever race, religion, financial income, etc. Throughout Document B, Benjamin Franklin continues to speak that a Christian’s obligation should extend their power to everyone and express the true meaning of freedom. “And who acknowledge the obligations of Christianity, to use such means as are in their power, to extend the blessings of freedom to every part of the human race;” (Doc. B). He then goes on to state that if anyone is wishing to put “the miseries and vices of slavery” to end and is “in humble confidence of the favor and support of the Father of Mankind”, then they can subscribe themselves to The Constitution of the Pennsylvania Society for Promoting the Abolition of Slavery and the Relief of Free Negroes Unlawfully Held in Bondage.” Overall, Mr. Franklin continues to support the fact that “All Men are Created Equal” in the Declaration of Independence even after eleven years prior to the signing. Owen Brown, writer of the Declaration of Liberty on July 4, 1859 even states, “That No Man had any right to deprive his fellow Man, of these Inherent rights, except in punishment of Crime.” He then continues to go on with, “The history of Slavery in the United States, is a history of injustice & Cruelties inflicted upon the Slave in every conceivable way, & in barbarity not surpassed by the most Savage Tribes.” (Doc. D). Both Owen Brown and Benjamin Franklin both agree that if “All Men are Created Equal” (Doc. A), then slavery must go. It has become a savage...