One common theme in The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution is freedom, especially freedom against tyranny. In the plaque pictured below, it states how the market is to be kept for the people and shall always be for the people. It isn’t controlled by some big monarch or any one person, but instead is for everyone equally. . It is also the duty of the people to protect the market against those that would try to abuse it or extort it. This is similar to the duties of citizens regarding protecting the new free land. This plaque is like a mini constitution for the market; a declaration that the market will always be free and public
The picture posted below is the Gadsden Flag, a flag designed during Revolutionary America. From its design we see one of the major sentiments prevalent during the American Revolution. The rattlesnake and slogan best represent the idea of the government not encroaching on people’s rights, as before a threat approaches a rattlesnake always gives a warning with its rattle. If the aggressor is to proceed any closer, the snake bites. Coupled with the slogan “Don’t tread on me” it accurately warns the audience that only harm will come from injuring them. This connects with the Declaration of Independence in which it is stated that “Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.” In this statement we see that like a rattlesnake who has been given its warning and is ready to strike, the United States has already made fair warnings to Britain about its transgressions, and yet rather than heeding to them Britain has only added insult to injury, which has led America to finally revolt. Do think there are any other ways this sentiment is best expressed? How do you interpret the symbolism of this flag?
In the United States constitution, it is stated that “We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union […] establish this Constitution for the United States of America.” What type of union is more perfect than the union of partitions of disjoint events?
Here I will compare the definition of a partition with the Union of states as discussed in the Constitution. The definition of a partition is as follows: a partition of a set X is a set of non-empty subsets of X such that every element x in X is in exactly one of these subsets (i.e., X is a disjoint union of the subsets). We see this idea that the Union of States (the United States) is a partition, shown in the Constitution in Article IV, section 3 on the discussion of the formation of new states. There it says that new states can be admitted into congress, but it cannot be formed or erected in the jurisdiction of any other state unless through agreement, and in section 4 it states that every state in the Union is guaranteed a republican form of government. As shown here, we can conclude that the United States is indeed a partition of the states it makes up: since each state is disjoint, and that the intersection of the states are the null set (no states share jurisdiction), and the union of all the states makes up the United States, then each state is thus a partition. In relation to the picture below, Ω represents the United States, where each subset Ω B1, B2, …, BN represents each state (a partition of Ω).
It is true however that the states are subordinate to the national government though. Could you disprove the notion that states are partitions of the United States by disproving the statement that the states are disjoint?
Walking around campus during rush hours, you will notice a wide range of people wearing a variety of outfits. Recently, I’ve begun to notice the existence of Clunky Trainers, often by the distinctive thud of the heavy shoe sole hitting the pavement. Being somewhat of a fashion expert myself with a very diverse selection of sweatshirts and sweatpants in my closet, I can’t help but imagine the different styles that I can potentially pair with the Clunky Trainers. To my dismay, I couldn’t find any. In fact, I cannot imagine myself wearing a pair. However, the high-frequency of sightings of these clunky trainers, made me hesitant to speak up. I was afraid of
getting prosecuted by the clunky trainer gang being criticized for my radical views. A few days later, I noticed a sign in front of the Dr.Sesus library (shown in picture). I was surprised that someone shared my views, but I was more so amazed by his/her bravery for standing up against the unyielding fashion trend. I questioned maybe I should join their good cause.
*The writing above is a dramatization of certain actual events. Some of the events have been changed for dramatic and comedic purposes.
Thankfully, in modern society, we do not have to live in constant fear of saying something wrong. The First Amendment of the US Consitution protected our freedom of speech/expression.
“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances”–– The US Constitution, Bill of Rights, Amendment I
The First Amendment implied that Congress should not limit people’s freedom of speech, press, and assembly. This is a fundamental right that we often overlooked. We are lucky we live in a society/country where this is defined as a fundamental right. Putting up a poster and wearing clunky trainers are both forms of expressing themselves. Neither of those actions should be punished if the legal system is just. We can express our dislike or criticism of the different fashion, like the character(s) in the story, yet we should do no harm to opposers. This also connects well with Rousseau’s state of nature or Locke’s fundamental human rights. It is certainly interesting how the majority, including many great philosophers, seem to agree on the fundamental right of the freedom of speech, if not freedom in general. However, debates often arise in what constitutes freedom? To what extent should we have an extent? How can we balance freedom and the general welfare? How should we be defining harm? physical harm is obvious, but what about psychological harm? Are there moral cases where freedom should be limited or even, taken away? Is freedom absolute or situational, if so, how do we come to a consensus on different scenarios?
The Declaration of Independence states 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.” Hence, the text is implying that every man has the inherent right to a good and fulfilling life. It is widely believed and proven that education increases the quality of life. Therefore, education is a basic human right and every citizen in the country should be able to access it. Then the above statement could also imply that every person has the right to a free college education. However, the college reality in America is far from the supposed truth stated in the Declaration of Independence. College tuition is affordable or free in almost all developed countries except in the United States. Why is college almost unaffordable for the majority of Americans? Why is American college tuition so uniquely expensive compared to college tuitions around the world?
The idea of freedom and its many sub-categories is expressed in the Declaration of the Rights of Man and of the Citizen. It can be seen that there are many types of freedom: religion, speech, etc. The attached image shows an example of freedom of speech as expressed in article XI which expresses the significance of the freedom to communicate whether it be written, spoken or printed. The images represents freedom of speech through print as newspapers are a platform to communicate and write freely. However, it also states that abuse of the freedom of communication shall be punishable by law. This begs the question of what should be considered abuse of freedom of communication and how harsh should the punishment be?
This illustration depicts one of the many grievous acts of violence towards the free people in the 13 united states. Under the Declaration of Independence, the appointed United States congress stated the undeniable imperativeness of protecting the inalienable rights of the people. A direct quote stated ” For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:” The exact murders that were done during the Boston massacre kindled the spark that would be printed on the pages modern Americans now hold dearly as a key foundation, second to the constitution, in developing the laws of the country. In further analysis, you may wonder to what extent will natural rights be protected.
Article 13 of the “Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen” states that we are all subject to a common tax, to maintain public force. As a result, the government is allowed to tax me and to take money whenever, and wherever I make a purchase. As it is my given duty to maintain the pockets of the sovereign, I could never imagine avoiding taxes with techniques such as laundering, or offshore bank accounts. Additionally, I could never imagine creating shell companies to hide said money. Article 14 states that every citizen has the right to see where their tax dollars are going. Obviously the tax dollars are going to the government! Considering the government is so large, it’s almost impossible to see where in the government your money is going to. It’s almost as if the government makes it hard for you to know: shocker. Is it going to the environment (probably not)? Is it going to someone’s pocket (who knows)? I ask you; do you know where your tax dollars are going?