My intention this morning was to write my own Declaration of Independence. I have, for a while now, been considering the option of seceding from the United States of America and forming my own autonomous nation. It´s not that I don´t like America or that I am ungrateful for the part it has played in the cultivation of our civilization. However, I have come to a point where I do not believe that the government which guides this nation is of, by, and for the people anymore, and due to my proclivity to have integrity with the values I hold most dear, I can no longer give allegiance to an organization that does not adhere to those values.
Truthfully, I do not believe that the present day government of the United States of America really holds to the values that it was founded upon. So before I get to writing my own Declaration of Independence, I thought it important and worthy of my time to pay deference to the great men who preceded me in seeking a higher ideal. From what I know of him, Thomas Jefferson was one of the greatest statesmen this country has ever known, and as the draftsman for this Declaration, he is owed a great debt of gratitude. But, honestly, how different was the tyrant they were facing than the tyrants we face today?
(Text in bold is the original Declaration of Independence as written by Thomas Jefferson)
The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America begins…
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.
Just as the pioneering Americans did, I feel that it is necessary to dissolve the political bands that connect me to the contemporary American two-party system. I do not believe that it works toward the highest good, but instead builds upon the same foundation of duality mentioned in the Judeo/Christian text of the second chapter of Genesis, usurping our ability to create a more perfect union by consistently trying to cultivate an unnecessary battle of good versus evil in the minds and hearts of Americans.
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.
I think it is interesting to note that life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are among our unalienable rights, but do not fully encompass them. Nevertheless, those three do greatly represent the essence of human rights. Unfortunately, it appears as if these rights, under our current political system, are given lip service, but not honored as they should be. Depending on your scientific opinion, my life was presented to me by my Creator on either August 4, 1971 or roughly nine months prior. The date is unimportant, but what is important is the realization that upon that first breath, I was also granted my liberty to pursue my own happiness, and that these rights were bestowed unto me not by any governmental institution or nation-state, but by an Entity far beyond the control of any such human institution. It is the same for every human being on the planet, and it is upon that connection with the Creator of all things that I place my independence.
That to secure these rights, governments are instituted among men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed.
Personally, I no longer consent to be governed by the United States of America. Considering that the establishment has seen fit to honor the same rights of personhood to man-made institutions such as corporations, I feel that the establishment has pushed the boundaries of blasphemy and have lost sight of what makes a person truly a person. A machine such as a corporation cannot, by any stretch of the imagination, have life, realize liberty, or ever achieve happiness. I do not feel that the government of the USA can secure these rights to me while at the same time so unscrupulously attempting to grant them to an inanimate idea such as a corporation.
That whenever any form of government becomes destructive to 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.
Considering the complexity and bureaucracy of the US government, and the desire that so many Americans have to continue honoring the organization, I do not feel it is in my best interest to attempt to alter it. Therefore, I hereby abolish my connection with it and institute a personalized government for the autonomous nation of Stevetopia. The building blocks for this new nation include the inalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, but also include peace, love, and responsibility.
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.
Indeed, it has become standard in our two-party voting procedures to cast our ballot for the lesser of two evils. Considering the devotion that both parties of the US government have cultivated toward the sole vision of unlimited economic growth, and the unequivocal capitulation they have offered to corporate powers that do not serve the greatest interests of the citizens of the United States of America, this evil has been suffered for long enough, and I will not feign subservience to a system that does not offer the highest good as an option.
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.
Considering also the heightened militaristic activity of the US government and the continued relinquishment of the rights of its citizens, I feel that this entity is growing increasingly despotic, and only reflects the original principles upon which it was founded as ideals that are being pulled further out of reach of the citizenry. Again, since my inalienable rights were bestowed to me by my Creator and are continually provided through that same Cosmic Resource, I see no need to subjugate myself to the rule of increasing despotism and therefore relieve the US government from its duties of providing for my present or future security. I´ll take my chances in the hands of God.
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.
Before I was regarded as a United States citizen, I was merely a citizen of the world, and as we move toward globalization, I feel that my primary citizenship must take precedence over the one granted to me merely due to the geography of my birth. As such, I feel that the militaristic advances of the US government have surpassed the definitions of defense and often blossomed into outright offense. Due to my adherence to the principles of peace, hope, love, and happiness, I cannot condone such behavior, and cannot abide by my integrity while allowing the US government to carry on such activities in my name. Furthermore, I feel that the intrusion of the US government into the lives of its citizens is doing more to deter the unalienable rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness than it does to protect them.
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.
With the consistent waging of war against other nations, the nebulous idea of terrorism, and its own citizens based upon issues of morality which should be decided on an individual level, I feel that the US government has transcended its role as a protector of its people and is growing more deeply into the role of aggressor.
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.
Amidst the battle between the two predominant political parties, the US government has lost sight of its duties to uphold the Constitution and protect the people of the United States of America, and deteriorated its ability to negotiate justice in favor of power plays dominated by selfishness, arrogance, and greed.
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.
Through its veneration of unlimited economic growth as the foundation for human progress and its wanton reverence of the economic elite over the rights of the citizenry, the US government has strayed from its appointment as a representative of the people and has become a detriment to the global collective.
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.
The US government, by granting personhood to man-made creations such as corporations, has opened the door for unmitigated economic injustice. By adhering to a representative democracy which has not altered its operational participation since its inception in spite of a populace that has multiplied in such time, the US government has relegated itself to being only a voice for the elite. Due to its fidelity to a two-party system as a representation of a melting pot citizenry, the US government in incapable of meeting the needs of the general public.
He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
With the passage of the US Patriot Act, the US government has dissolved the rights of the people and set itself up as a non-representative dictatorship.
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 meantime exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
Due to its preoccupation with the two-party system and the development of career politicians, the US government has strayed from its initial vision of representation of, by, and for the people, devolving to a ruling elite that has lost sight of the freedoms it was created to defend.
He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.
In its development of such stringent immigration laws while simultaneously empowering the outsourcing of American jobs, the US government has instituted a harmful precedent of hypocrisy which serves neither the citizenry of the United States nor the global population.
He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.
By adhering to the antiquated practice of the electoral college amidst the ineffectual two-party system, the US government has proven itself impotent in calibrating the values of the American people.
He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
Through the disdainful use of corporate lobbyists, the US government has co-opted the efficacy of democracy and moves further toward fascism as the practice is continued.
He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people, and eat out their substance.
By developing departments designed to restrict the freedoms of Americans, thereby restricting the cultivation of freedoms worldwide, and infusing these departments with initiatives of the further empowerment of the economic elite, the US government has become a hindrance toward the maturation of the inalienable rights of humankind.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies without the consent of our legislature.
With more than fifty percent of the US government budget devoted toward military exploits, with hundreds of bases around the globe, the US government has initiated a state of endless violence empirical in nature, driving toward the establishment of a worldwide police state.
He has affected to render the military independent of and superior to civil power.
By devoting so much energy toward militaristic advances, the US government has detracted from resources that should be used to enhance the lives of its citizens.
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:
By relegating the First Amendment right of free speech to certain zones and out of earshot of the electorate, the US government has stripped the American people of its voice.
For quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
By turning the National Guard against the citizens of the United States instead of adhering to their purpose of protection, the US government continues to incite the rebellion of its people as their rights are continually stripped away.
For protecting them, by mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states:
By instituting the use of private mercenaries in military endeavors, the US government has set itself up as bullies in the world and tossed justice by the wayside.
For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world:
By setting up embargoes with particular countries, the US government has limited the economic freedoms of its citizenry. By imposing legislation that works toward the banishment of natural resources like hemp and other forms of the cannabis plant, the US government has crippled productivity and sustainability initiatives for its people and perpetuated this ignorance and inefficiency throughout the world in order to propagate more destructive industries in the name of greed.
For imposing taxes on us without our consent:
By establishing the Internal Revenue Service to siphon the wealth of individuals, the US government has relegated its citizens to unwilling participants in its practices without their consent.
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury:
With the implementation of camps used to hold foreigners without trial for indeterminate amounts of time, the US government has usurped the rights of humankind.
For transporting us beyond seas to be tried for pretended offenses:
By incorporating the practice of rendition in dealing with American citizens, the US government has usurped the rights of its citizens.
For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring 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 in these colonies:
By attempting to propagate our own version of democracy among nations that are not prepared to fight for it themselves, the US government has established itself as an unnecessary parental figure without the maturity to make decisions on behalf of its adopted children.
For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments:
By establishing laws based on morality, the US government has stood in the way of the development of liberty and stripped its citizens of the right and privilege to make responsible decisions as to the course of their individual lives.
For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
In establishing federal laws which do not support the laws of the states and their freedom to govern with autonomy, the US government has usurped the rights of the states and the individuals therein.
He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.
By furthering the propagation of the US Patriot Act, the US government has declared war against its own people.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
Due to its rampant adherence to unlimited economic gain and unbridled devotion to corporate forces, the US government has developed practices of environmental destruction and the unwise consumption of our natural resources for the benefit of the economic elite, thereby detracting from the quality of life for future generations.
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 and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy of the head of a civilized nation.
Though its practice of barbarous methods of interrogation and the use of private mercenaries, the US government has proven itself irrespective of diplomacy and civilized negotiations.
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.
By recruiting the young people of the citizenry to sacrifice their lives through militaristic endeavors while their own offspring refuse to serve in such a capacity, the members of the US government has unwittingly created a caste system, placing themselves and their families among the elite, showing little regard for the lives of the average American family.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare, is undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
By implementing the use of such tactics as ¨shock and awe,¨ the US government has proven itself to be unconcerned with the safely of women and children in foreign countries, and thus irrespective of life itself.
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.
By subjugating our freedom of speech to exclusive zones where they cannot be heard by the electorate, and by continually showing favoritism to those consumed with quantifiable economic growth instead of the quality of human livelihood, the US government has proven itself inept at hearing the voice and serving the good of its 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.
As my American brothers and sisters have continually devoted themselves to uphold the status quo in blind deference to patriotism over pragmatic approaches to the further cultivation of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, I find myself unable to further participate in a system which does not serve their, or my, best interests. I do not hold myself as an enemy of the state or of its citizenry, but as a friend to all in times of both war and peace.
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 the 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.
As the sole representative for myself, with all of the responsibilities contained therein, I do hereby appeal to my Creator with gratitude for the unalienable rights bestowed unto me, and with the hope and faith of their continuance, joyfully and reverently secede from the United States citizenship granted to me upon by birth, and do hereby declare myself as the autonomous nation of Stevetopia, no longer requiring representation by any member or organization of the government of the United States of America. I shall continue to participate in the cultivation of peaceful living upon the land that we share in hopes that it will continue to blossom throughout the rest of the world. I hereby offer to the citizens of America my lifelong brotherhood, expanding the sentiment of diplomacy, fellowship, peace, and the responsible stewardship of our natural resources toward our collective evolution and the well-being of future generations throughout the world and to all nations and individuals therein.
Steve McAllister is the author of The Rucksack Letters and How to Survive an Estralarian Mind Meld. He posts regularly at The Unbroken Path and is currently the Director of Operational Development for the Common Wealth Time Bank in Sarasota, Florida. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, and YouTube.