Throughout history, civilizations have risen and fallen. Many people have lived in slavery, and few in freedom. Even in the modern world, many live under a totalitarian regime, and many under the oppression of communism and dictatorships.
In 1215 a group of Englishmen banded together and created the magna carta, a charter of common laws which provides for the basic rights of man.
Magna Carta is an English charter, originally issued in the year 1215 and reissued later in the 13th century in modified versions. The later versions excluded the most direct challenges to the monarch’s authority that had been present in the 1215 charter. The charter first passed into law in 1225; the 1297 version, with the long title (originally in Latin) The Great Charter of the Liberties of England, and of the Liberties of the Forest, still remains on the statute books of England and Wales.
The 1215 charter required King John of England to proclaim certain liberties, and accept that his will was not arbitrary, for example by explicitly accepting that no “freeman” (in the sense of non-serf) could be punished except through the law of the land, a right which is still in existence today.
The United States of America
When Englishmen left their homeland for the new world, they brought with them charters establishing the colonies. The Massachusetts Bay Company charter for example stated the colonists would “have and enjoy all liberties and immunities of free and natural subjects.” The Virginia Charter of 1606 (which was largely drafted by Sir Edward Coke) stated the colonists would have all “liberties, franchises and immunities” as if they had been born in England. The Massachusetts Body of Liberties contained similarities to clause 29 of the Magna Carta, and the Massachusetts General Court in drawing it up viewed Magna Carta as the chief embodiment of English common law. The other colonies would follow their example.
The settlers of the origional 13 colonies lived by the comman laws of England, and when they began to feel oppressed by the monarchy of England, they decided to seperate from the motherland, and create a new country.
United States Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence was a statement adopted by the Continental Congress on July 4, 1776, which announced that the thirteen American colonies then at war with Great Britain regarded themselves as independent states, and no longer a part of the British Empire. John Adams put forth a resolution earlier in the year which made a formal declaration inevitable. A committee was assembled to draft the formal declaration, which was to be ready when congress voted on independence. Adams persuaded the committee to select Thomas Jefferson to compose the original draft of the document, which congress would edit to produce the final version. The Declaration was ultimately a formal explanation of why Congress had voted on July 2 to declare independence from Great Britain, more than a year after the outbreak of the American Revolutionary War.
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.
After the war of independence, the Constitution and bill of rights were written.
These documents have provided the gateway for the most free country in the history of the world.
This document must be protected to ensure the freedom of man.
Ronald Reagan once said that America is the last shining beacon of hope in the world. I believe this to be true, no matter how dark the days may be becoming.
Long live Liberty and the freedom of mankind!
5 thoughts on “Documents to live by”
Very good! Great information.
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