back to articles

My Notes on the Declaration of Independence


I was always scared to read this document. I was worried that I will not understand the way that people wrote ~250 years ago, or even worse just won’t have the vocab to understand (English is not my native tongue afterall).

In the end as with many things it turned out to be not that scary, even pleasent I would say.

Two things helped my conquer my fear:

  1. The fact that this document was added in Year 1 of the 10 Year Plan proposed by Robert Hutchins and Mortimer Adler.
  2. The fact that I had Readwise Ghostreader helping me along the way was crucial.


For anyone who hasn’t read this monumental document, here is the gist of it:

  • American Colonies (united States of America) got tired of King George III tyranny.
  • They think it is their moral duty to the world and god to put all of their thoughts on a document.
  • They list all the things that King has done horribly.
  • Finally they declare that from the moment of signing this document they are independent.


It was very interesting to read, knowing a bit of context from OverSimplified video.

My only question/lack of understanding was regarding the “all men created equal” message give all the slavery that was going on at the time. I would love some historian to shed some light on this for me. Seems somewhat hypocrticial.

Other than that is was a great statement from the group that felt they can govern better than their current government.

My Notes

  • 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. Note: The Declaration of Independence says that when a group of people feel the need to break away from another group and become their own separate and equal country, they should explain why they want to do this.

  • We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal Note: The first immediate thought I’d that it is slightly hypocritic given all the slavery that was going on?

  • 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. Note: I wonder what the founding fathers thought when they imagined people abolishing the government. How is it best to implement.

  • Assent to Laws Note: In the Declaration of Independence: A Transcription written by Carter Braxton, the term “Assent to Laws” is used to describe King George III’s refusal to approve or agree to certain laws that were deemed necessary for the public good. This refusal is seen as a violation of the principles of good governance and the consent of the governed, which ultimately leads to the declaration of independence by the American colonies. King George III’s denial of assent to laws is one of the grievances listed in the document as evidence of his tyranny and the justification for the colonies’ separation from British rule.

  • 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. Note: He wouldn’t make new laws to help many people unless they gave up their right to have a say in making decisions in the government, which is really important to them and only scary to cruel rulers.

  • as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.


Tuesday Letter

Consider signing up for my personal newsletter. I will share the most interesting articles and resources I've encountered during the week.