The US Constitution and the Declaration of Independence

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The United States Constitution and the Declaration of Independence are two of the most important documents in the history of America because they form the basis of the rules and freedoms that guide individuals. Although the documents are old, they are the main reason why the American citizens are free in their country. The Declaration of Independence denotes the freedom from the British rule while the Constitution is the establishment of laws that give the people of the United States their rights. Additionally, the two documents laid the foundation for independence and address the most basic political questions raised by citizens.

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While both the US Constitution and the Declaration of Independence reveal essential information concerning America’s independence, they are also diverse in several ways. The Declaration of Independence was drafted by Thomas Jefferson and acts as a cherished symbol of liberty in the United States because it states the ideas of the government’s founding fathers. Additionally, the document contains the numerous complaints raised by the people who struggled to attain America’s independence in the 1700s (United States and Jefferson 1). The Declaration of Independence expresses the convictions under the rule of the British towards the American people and hence it becomes an essential reference in the development of the US Constitution.

The United States Constitution is a document which explains the formation of the national government and outlines the fundamental laws that guide individuals. Delegates of the Constitutional Convention met on September 17, 1787 and wrote the constitution based on the Articles of Confederation. The executive, judicial, and legislative branches were established and the constitution ensured that none had too much power (Constitution 2). Additionally, the Constitution remains the sole reason why the Americans are free to exercise their civic and individual rights. The Bill of Rights refers to the first ten amendments that were added to the constitution to address the basic human rights. The Bill of Rights gives the American people the freedom of religion, speech, right to possess arms, and protection from unreasonable searches. Therefore, the US Constitution helped in shaping the structure of United States government and provided the ultimate rights for the people (Spaeth & Smith 1). Additionally, it played a key role in the development of America.

The Declaration of Independence is a separate document from the United Sates Constitution although it serves as the backbone for the establishment of the Constitution. Nevertheless, the Constitution is not interpreted based on the Articles of Confederation which were used in the formation of the Declaration of Independence (Dana 321). The declaration of independence was a significant step for the American citizens because it guaranteed them the basic human rights. The importance of the Declaration was that it guided the meaning of the constitution. Therefore, without the Declaration of Independence, it would have been difficult to draft an effective Constitution.

The US Constitution is the basis for the formation of the United States government and hence it is termed as the supreme law of the land. Also, the constitution states the rights and freedoms of the American people. The Declaration of Independence was only a statement saying that US was no longer under the rule of the British people. The current structure of the American government is based on both documents although the Constitution explains much of the structure. The citizens have learned that they have rights and freedoms as well as living freely in the United States.

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  1. Constitution, U. S. “Article I.” (1787).
  2. Dana, William F. “The Declaration of Independence.” Harvard Law Review (1900): 319-343.
  3. Spaeth, Harold J., and Edward Conrad Smith. Constitution of the United States—13th Edition. HarperCollins Publishers, 1972.
  4. United States, and Thomas Jefferson. The declaration of independence. Encyclopedia Britannica, 1952.
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