The Word Equal

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TJ Oricchio

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal... The meaning of the word equal in this sentence of the Declaration of Independence has been controversial. We will never know what Thomas Jefferson meant by equal. Throughout the history of the United States of America, all men have not been equal, so this is where historians question the word equal. In my point of view, I believe the Founding Fathers needed ideas and arguments against the British. They were not talking about the citizens of the colonies. They used the word equal as an argument against the British. The British would have just laughed if the declaration said, “we want freedom because it’s fair.” The word equal was referring to Britain and the thirteen colonies. The Founding Fathers were saying that we were all created equal so no one has power over anyone else. They wrote the Declaration of Independence to a king. Kings are usually born into power. They become kings because they believe that they are better than everyone else. Saying that all men are created equal could have meant to bring the king down to a status of a regular man. If everyone has equal rights to Life, Property, and the pursuit of Happiness, then Britain shouldn’t be able to rule over the thirteen colonies. I believe that there was no true meaning in the word equal. If you look at America, past and present, we have had slavery, unjust taxing, poor vs. rich, and even our voting for president isn’t fair because some people’s votes aren’t counted. Income inequality is a big issue today. Yes, the Founding Fathers didn’t know about these problems today but they could have done something back then. Educated men had more rights than uneducated men. Equal may be controversial but ‘all men’ can change the meaning of equal. What does all men mean? I believe all men was meant by humanity. That would make equal seem like a lie or just some word Thomas Jefferson wrote. Women’s rights...
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