Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Declaration of Independence

Larry Arnn has an article in praise of the Declaration of Independence over at Townhall. For the most part it tries to be non-partisan but it can't help lamenting the modern liberal culture that doesn't love our founding documents.
Increasingly our politics revolve around the fashions of other nations or of that vast entity, commanding and yet impotent—“the world,” or better, “the rest of the world.” Seldom now do our politicians hearken to the great documents of our republic, the Declaration and the Constitution, to guide their actions or restrain their ambitions. We are reaching, perhaps, the place where America does not matter. Many think this a happy place.
I think this is a measure of how successful the ideas contained in the Declaration of Independence have been. The ideas contained there in are honored in nations far beyond our own.

And isn't that the point? "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." All men. Not just Americans.

He also fails to note, not surprisingly, how we Americans have turned our back on some of these principals in our war on Terror. In the recent furor over the prisoners at Guantenemo, the Conservatives were fighting for the right to hold people indefinitely, with no recourse and no review. That doesn't sound like we are respecting the rights of all men, does it?

The sad truth is that there may be nations beyond our borders that respect our founding documents more than we do. That's not America-Hating. That's a plea for us to do better.

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