A Reading of the Declaration of Independence

Part of my ongoing effort to have people read the Declaration on the Fourth.  This video demonstrates two things.  First, that even Hollywood can’t foul up the Declaration when Mr. Jefferson’s words are allowed to speak for themselves.  Second, that the Declaration is very much a speech, and is best understood when read aloud.  In the ealier days of our Republic, a public reading of the Declaration was usually a part of the festivities on the Fourth.  It is a tradition that I wish we would return to.

3 Responses to A Reading of the Declaration of Independence

  • Good grief. I despise these irritatingly pious examples of Americanist civil religion. Jefferson was a silly manichean heretic, not to mention an adulterer who took advantage of at least one of the slaves in his care. We should remember him as he was, not as the rebellious (and anti-Catholic) spirit of ’76 tries falsely portrays him.

  • Andrew, I am sure that there are nations just panting for Catholic monarchist immigrants. If you look around I am sure you will find a land where you will never have to be bothered by the words of Mr. Jefferson ever again. I guess your current abode in South Africa doesn’t quite cut it.

  • I stand second to no one in my contempt for Jefferson, but Cusack is out to lunch. First of all, the DoI was hardly emblematic of the totality of Jefferson’s thought. His original draft was greatly modified, and the finished product was not even remotely a testament to a Jeffersonian political philosophy.

    As regards to Sally Hemmings, there is simply no definitive proof either way as to whether or not Jefferson fathered children by her. It’s also irrelevant as regards to the merits of Jefferson’s thought or the DoI.

    And he wasn’t anti-Catholic. No, his anti-religious bigotry ran much deeper than that – he was pretty much opposed to all organized religion. But again, kind of irrelevant in analyzing the Declaration.

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