John Locke Declaration Of Independence Analysis

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words from The Declaration of Independence that all American citizens are familiar with. But have any of us ever stopped to wonder where the inspiration for these popular ideals may have come from? After all, it seems a little implausible to think that all of the standards on which our government has been built came from just our Founding Fathers, without any insight or influence from others that came before them. In fact, many of the concepts found in the most important document to the United States of America- The Declaration of Independence– can be traced back to the beliefs of many popular philosophers of that time, such as John Locke and Thomas Paine. These two men, through their ideas set in their works- Two Treatises of Government (Locke), …show more content…

Locke’s beliefs that the government only has the right to govern if the people consent for it to do so is apparent in both The Declaration of Independence and The Constitution of the United States of America. The Declaration of Independence states: This is derived from Locke’s idea that Also, in Article I of The Constitution, a direct outline is provided to ensure the inclusion of a proper Representative of the states, to protect this philosophy. Both John Locke and the Founding Fathers stress the importance of the people dictating the government’s actions, not the opposite. Thus, the two basic ideals of the United States’ government- the right of the individual to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness, and the government existing only from the consent of the people- identically match those put forth in John Locke’s Two Treatises of Government, making John Locke one of the most influential philosophers in the founding of the United States of America. But would the Founding Fathers have even found the need for Locke’s ideas without the prompting of a reformation from another? This prompting came from Thomas Paine’s pamphlet, Common Sense, which had an enormous impact on the drive for revolution in the United States. Published only 7 months before the release of The Declaration of Independence, Paine’s ideas regarding separating from Britain and maintaining a separate country apart from England were still fresh in the Founding Father’s minds, leading his influence to be prominent when writing The Declaration of

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