Jeffrey L. Novy, Attorney at Law
 
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Declaration of Independence

The Bill of Rights

The Constitution of The State of Texas

 

Declaration of Independence

THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE:
In Congress, July 4, 1776,

THE UNANIMOUS DECLARATION OF THE
THIRTEEN UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume  among the Powers of the  earth, the separate and equal  station to which  the Laws of  Nature and of
Nature's God entitle them, a  decent respect to the opinions  of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

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.

That to  secure these  rights, Governments  are instituted among Men, deriving  their just  powers from  the consent  of the governed.

That  whenever  any  Form  of  Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right  of the People to alter or  to abolish it, and to  institute new Government, laying  its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem  most likely to  effect their Safety  and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will  dictate that Governments long  established should not be changed for light and transient  causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown, that mankind are more disposed to suffer,  while evils are  sufferable, than to  right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the  same Object,  evinces a  design to  reduce them under absolute Despotism,  it is  their right,  it is  their duty,  to throw off such Government, and  to provide new Guards for  their future security.

Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of  Great Britain is a history  of repeated injuries and  usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States.  To prove this,  let Facts be  submitted to a
candid world.

He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has  forbidden his  Governors to  pass Laws  of immediate and pressing importance,  unless suspended  in their  operation till his Assent  should be obtained; and  when so  suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of  people, unless  those people  would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right  inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.

He has  called together  legislative bodies  at places  unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from  the depository of their  public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into  compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for  opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has  refused for  a long  time, after  such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers,  incapable of Annihilation,  have returned to  the People at  large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all  the dangers  of invasion  from without,  and convulsions
within.

He has endeavored  to prevent the  population of these  States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws of Naturalization of  Foreigners; refusing to pass  others to encourage their  migrations hither,  and  raising  the  conditions  of new Appropriations of Lands.

He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.

He has made Judges dependent  on his Will alone, for  the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He  has  erected  a  multitude  of  New Offices, and sent hither swarms  of  Officers  to  harass  our  People, and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.

He has  combined with  others to  subject us  to a  jurisdiction foreign to  our constitution,  and unacknowledged  by our  laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:

For protecting them,  by a mock Trial, from Punishment for any Murders which  they should  commit on  the Inhabitants  of these States:

For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:

For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:

For depriving  us in  many cases,  of the  benefits of  Trial by Jury:

For  transporting  us  beyond  Seas  to  be  tried for pretended offences:

For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province,  establishing  therein  an  Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once  an example and fit instrument for  introducing the same absolute  rule into these Colonies:

For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:

For suspending  our own  Legislatures, and  declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has  abdicated Government  here, by  declaring us  out of his Protection and waging War against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our  towns, and destroyed the Lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign  mercenaries to complete  the works of  death, desolation and  tyranny, already begun with circumstances  of Cruelty & perfidy  scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy  the Head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their  Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.

He has excited  domestic insurrections amongst  us, and has  endeavoured  to  bring  on  the  inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian  Savages, whose  known rule  of warfare,  is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.

In every stage of these  Oppressions We have Petitioned for  Redress in the most humble terms: 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.

Nor have We been wanting  in attention to our British  brethren. We  have  warned  them  from  time  to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us.  We have reminded them  of the circumstances  of our emigration  and settlement here. We  have appealed to  their native justice  and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred  to  disavow  these  usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice  of justice  and of  consanguinity. We  must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity,  which  denounces our Separation, and hold them, as  we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.

We, therefore, the Representatives of the united States of America, in General Congress, Assembled,  appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name,  and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and  Independent States; that they are Absolved from all  Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political  connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that  as Free and Independent States, they have full  Power  to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and  Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the Protection of  Divine Providence, we mutually  pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.

        JOHN HANCOCK, President

        Attested, CHARLES THOMSON, Secretary

        New Hampshire
         JOSIAH BARTLETT
         WILLIAM WHIPPLE
         MATTHEW THORNTON

        Massachusetts-Bay
         SAMUEL ADAMS
         JOHN ADAMS
         ROBERT TREAT PAINE
         ELBRIDGE GERRY

        Rhode Island
         STEPHEN HOPKINS
         WILLIAM ELLERY

        Connecticut
         ROGER SHERMAN
         SAMUEL HUNTINGTON
         WILLIAM WILLIAMS
         OLIVER WOLCOTT

        Georgia
         BUTTON GWINNETT
         LYMAN HALL
         GEO. WALTON

        Maryland
         SAMUEL CHASE
         WILLIAM PACA
         THOMAS STONE
         CHARLES CARROLL
            OF CARROLLTON

        Virginia
         GEORGE WYTHE
         RICHARD HENRY LEE
         THOMAS JEFFERSON
         BENJAMIN HARRISON
         THOMAS NELSON, JR.
         FRANCIS LIGHTFOOT LEE
         CARTER BRAXTON.

        New York
         WILLIAM FLOYD
         PHILIP LIVINGSTON
         FRANCIS LEWIS
         LEWIS MORRIS

        Pennsylvania
         ROBERT MORRIS
         BENJAMIN RUSH
         BENJAMIN FRANKLIN
         JOHN MORTON
         GEORGE CLYMER
         JAMES SMITH
         GEORGE TAYLOR
         JAMES WILSON
         GEORGE ROSS

        Delaware
         CAESAR RODNEY
         GEORGE READ
         THOMAS M'KEAN

        North Carolina
         WILLIAM HOOPER
         JOSEPH HEWES
         JOHN PENN

        South Carolina
         EDWARD RUTLEDGE
         THOMAS HEYWARD, JR.
         THOMAS LYNCH, JR.
         ARTHUR MIDDLETON

        New Jersey
         RICHARD STOCKTON
         JOHN WITHERSPOON
         FRANCIS HOPKINS
         JOHN HART
         ABRAHAM CLARK

 

 

 

 

 
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