Author Topic: "All Men Were Created Equal"  (Read 3903 times)

Offline PickelledEggs

"All Men Were Created Equal"
« on: August 09, 2013, 11:00:55 PM »
Since humans weren't "created", they evolved over time. What does it mean about the quote from the U.S.'s Declaration of Independence "all men were created equal"

Discuss.
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"I have an open mind, but not so open that my brains will fall out" -James Randi
"One who truly hates himself cannot love, he cannot place his trust in another." - NGE

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #1 on: August 09, 2013, 11:11:15 PM »
I think what they were alluding to, was that there was no natural right to be a Nobleman.  The King was nothing special, he farted like the rest of us.

The intent was that legally there were not peers, just other people.  While we say a right of trial before a person's peers, we don't mean common men or lords.  We mean other people not normally involved in the judiciary.  

And of course, the signers of the Declaration of Independence didn't see Negros, Indians, or women as being created equal to men.  Because they obviously weren't real men.  At least to them.  

Good words wasted on ignorant people, in my opinion.

Offline mykcob4

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2013, 01:16:22 AM »
Quote from: "LikelyToBreak"
I think what they were alluding to, was that there was no natural right to be a Nobleman.  The King was nothing special, he farted like the rest of us.

The intent was that legally there were not peers, just other people.  While we say a right of trial before a person's peers, we don't mean common men or lords.  We mean other people not normally involved in the judiciary.  

And of course, the signers of the Declaration of Independence didn't see Negros, Indians, or women as being created equal to men.  Because they obviously weren't real men.  At least to them.  

Good words wasted on ignorant people, in my opinion.
Some of the archetects of the constitution believed that women, negros and natives were equal but to ratify the document it had to pass a majority which were basically ignorant and culturalized into institutional prejudices. It was easy to convince the common colonial that he was equal to royalty, even that royalty didn't have divinity rights, but to convince them that minorities had rights was impossible at the time. Jefferson:http://www.monticello.org/site/plantation-and-slavery/thomas-jefferson-and-slavery
Many like Franklin, Jay, Madison were for equal rughts but not with imediate implimentation. Their collective greatest fear came true in the form of the civil war.
Ironically, Lincoln was a student of Jefferson and hastened the civil war with his campaign retoric. He also was for gradual abolition, but his election caused both sides to ramp up their efforts that led to war.

Offline mykcob4

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2013, 01:20:09 AM »
A further note: The fact that colonist didn't hold that natives were equal to the white colonist caused the American Revolution in the first place. Everyone in this nation was taught that taxation without representation ws the chief cause and it was a major factor, but the fact that George III honored a treaty with the Indian nations that limited the colonist from expanding west was just as important as taxes.

Offline Thumpalumpacus

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #4 on: August 10, 2013, 01:25:03 AM »
Quote from: "PickelledEggs"
Since humans weren't "created", they evolved over time. What does it mean about the quote from the U.S.'s Declaration of Independence "all men were created equal"

Discuss.

Pretty sure it means that historical judgments should account for context, such as the state of knowledge at the time something is written.
<insert witty aphorism here>

Offline aitm

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #5 on: August 10, 2013, 12:41:34 PM »
Quote from: "PickelledEggs"
Since humans weren't "created", they evolved over time. What does it mean about the quote from the U.S.'s Declaration of Independence "all men were created equal"

Discuss.

well jeepers, I think it means at the time the said that they thought humans were created. What part confuses you?
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Offline PickelledEggs

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #6 on: August 10, 2013, 12:53:39 PM »
Quote from: "aitm"
Quote from: "PickelledEggs"
Since humans weren't "created", they evolved over time. What does it mean about the quote from the U.S.'s Declaration of Independence "all men were created equal"

Discuss.

well jeepers, I think it means at the time the said that they thought humans were created. What part confuses you?
lol

I wanted to focus more on the equality part. Sometimes I'm not the best at getting across things.   :/

Disregard the creation vs evolution part.

How do you guys think the quote "all men were created equal" applies today? In different regions? With different groups of people?
"Tell Pilate to release the files!!!" - Bill Hicks
"I have an open mind, but not so open that my brains will fall out" -James Randi
"One who truly hates himself cannot love, he cannot place his trust in another." - NGE

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #7 on: August 10, 2013, 12:53:43 PM »
mykcob4, you make some excellent points.  And it still took until the 1960's to pass a civil rights act.  But, as a society we are slowly evolving.  Who knows, maybe in my grandkids time, assuming I have any, people will look past color, creed, sex, and national origins.

Offline Solitary

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #8 on: August 10, 2013, 01:01:11 PM »
I've always had a problem with "All Men Were Created Equal" because it is so obviously wrong, to me anyway. I know it means all men should be treated as equal, but why didn't it just say that. Why does legal documents have to be so mysterious? LAWYERS!  :roll:  Solitary
There is nothing more frightful than ignorance in action.

Offline aitm

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #9 on: August 10, 2013, 01:12:54 PM »
If I recall, I think what they "really" meant was that all- free men who owned land- were created equal. If memory serves me, only they were allowed to vote. But its been a few beers over the top.
A humans desire to live is exceeded only by their willingness to die for another. Even god cannot equal this magnificent sacrifice. No god has the right to judge them.-first tenant of the Panotheust

Online Shiranu

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #10 on: August 10, 2013, 01:25:11 PM »
Quote from: "aitm"
If I recall, I think what they "really" meant was that all- free men who owned land- were created equal. If memory serves me, only they were allowed to vote. But its been a few beers over the top.

This.

All they did was replace "royalty" with "landowner". Regardless of what they may have believed, what they did was nothing different than Britain; "does your family have money and clout? Okay, you have more rights than others and are "greater"."

I would say it was a step in the right direction, but I honestly don't believe that, considering Britain offered legal equality for minorities and women long before we did. At best the revolution was irrelevant to civil rights but I would argue the society that was developed post-revolution was actually more detrimental than equal rights than if the Americans had stayed under the crown.
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Offline Hijiri Byakuren

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Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #11 on: August 10, 2013, 01:34:12 PM »
Quote from: "aitm"
If I recall, I think what they "really" meant was that all- free men who owned land- were created equal. If memory serves me, only they were allowed to vote. But its been a few beers over the top.
Actually I think they meant something similar to what was written by another famous individual:

"All animals are equal, but some animals are more equal than others."
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Offline stromboli

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #12 on: August 10, 2013, 02:01:03 PM »
Right. Equality based on land ownership and the rejection of a peerage. It certainly does not mean we are born with equal status or equal abilities.
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Offline Colanth

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #13 on: August 10, 2013, 04:42:56 PM »
The same people who wrote that all men are created equal also wrote that we're all born with the same rights to realize our opportunities.  I don't think that "all men are created equal" meant anything more - to them - than that.

(The usual comments about "all" and "created" apply.)
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Offline mykcob4

Re: "All Men Were Created Equal"
« Reply #14 on: August 11, 2013, 12:25:43 PM »
Okay, there is a misconception about the Constitution.
1) No where in history before the Constitution were common men given any rights. That was a shocking inovation at the time and still is. Although there have been many types of government the common man has been excluded from the equation. Even in the birth place of democracy, ancient Greece, a common man was NOT a citizen, and only citizens had democratic rights. It took a long line of philosophers, atheist, and logical critical thinkers to come up with the concept that people beyond land ownership, beyond divine birthright, had rights.
The Constitution is the courageous concept enacted into the greatest experiment ever tried. It is a LIVING document, despite what the conservaturds would have you believe.
The architects of the Constitution, in particular the actual authors, John Jay, James Madison and a few others, knew full well what they were writing into law. They had to be clever because they were fighting prejudice, religiousity, tradition, cultural bias, ignorance, stupiity, AND that was just in their own congress. Beyond that they had to sell what they had devised to the people at large.
The problem of a successful revolution is that at the onset everyone is in it together to throw off oppression. By the time it ends the factions are in it for themselves.
To bind the new nation together the writers(not the signers) had to write into law a way, a path for their ultimate ideal to eventually become reality. The problem is that we sell short the original authors.
The "Charactor of the Law" is what it is called and it is a very hard definition of the law. The original document is set up to live and change not only in time to accomodate with the times, but to also eventually get to what the fathers intended.
No one at the time had a solution about slavery. Thomas Jefferson wanted to abolish slavery. People often point to Jefferson's attitude toward negros as confirmation that blacks aren't exactly equal. They leave out what Jefferson thought about common men. He considered them ignorant children as well that had to be led for their own good until they collective think on their own. Jefferson considered a slave on par with the common farm worker of the time.
The constitution was designed to accomodate for the eventuality that all men would acheive equality and despite the fact that they were not actual equals, they should have equal rights making a way for the opportunity to become intellectual peers.
The equal rights part of the constitution addresses the lie of divine right, divine rule. It dismisses birthright altogether. By doing so it allows for all beings to have equal rights under the law. Those rights go beyond "citizen" and extend to everyone to include foriegners and aliens. Example a foriegn national has the same rights as a citizen of the US. Under US law a foriegn national cannot be prosecuted any differently than a US citizen. This very fact is why we classify terrorist as military combatants, thus denying them constitutional protection.
Equality, equal rights is a statement about treatment, NOT creation. Solitary has it correct.

 

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