From the lecture and our readings we know that the British government often went through periods and rulers who took little interest in the welfare and happiness of the common people. We see this in warring over the principal religion to be held and also on the high taxes and limited justice. In the Declaration of Independence the drafters state that “mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed.” This is their reference to the suffrage under that British government. Also it is their indication that they had been apart of that suffrage and they had sustained and that their reason for trying to absolve that government for themselves now is because that suffrage has become intolerable.
As colonists still under Britain’s rule they faced heavier taxations then before, we see this is particularly so from the lectures and readings because they were given no representation over the course or terms of the taxations as they would have been given in Britain. They met as well with more stringent rules as Britain strived to have more control over them. The main embodiment of the complaints that we see in the declaration of Independence come from the stamp, intolerable, townsend (which primarily was opposed by Samuel Adams-a drafter of the Declaration of Independence), Boston port, quartering, Massachusetts bay regulation and administration of justice acts. Within these they discuss having to keep and feed soldiers even in times of peace, being barred from town meetings newly being held only by officials elected by the British government, not being able to bring justice to British officials killing or wronging the colonists and getting no representation even though they are still considered apart of Britain.
Along with the present actualities of events that lead to the signing of the Declaration of Independence, we see also the impact on the drafters by philosophers such as Thomas Hobbes, John Locke and Jean-Jacques Rousseau visible more subtly in the document. Thomas Hobbes belief that government is necessary to maintain integrity and peace is present in that the drafters do not say that they wish to abolish government completely, merely that they just wish to change from the one they are currently under since it is no longer the one most ideal for serving the people or their purpose. From outside reading we know that this idea of fluid government comes from the philosopher Jean-Jacques Rousseau who expressed that has the governed body changed the government must as well in order to maintain balance and to keep the pertinent interests in mind. He maintained that there was no one absolute form of government but rather different governments that fit different situations. We see all of these things supported as well by John Locke who wrote that it is important to find ourselves governed by political and natural laws but equally as important to be able to ask why and take an active role in those laws.
What we find in history and the Declaration of Independence is an age old truth. Since it is true that no person lives outside of their culture, people are influenced by their surroundings and experiences. In being so influenced there is a natural order to adhere to things pertaining to the group whether it be laws, ideas, codes of conduct or principal. However, being a primal being and sharing partaking in different cultures and experiences we have also formed a concept of individuality. This individuality comes together to impact that culture moreover. In short, ruling bodies are a part of the people and when they set themselves aside from those people problems insure and change becomes not only necessary but often unavoidable due to the course of human nature. person lives outside of their culture albeit political, economical, historical, societal or philosophical. The writers of the Declaration of Independence are no exception to this. In writing it they were affected by the British governmental system since they had been a part of it for so long and because it still exercised control over them as colonists. The exercise of this control over them in particular, such as various tariffs, military stationing and picked leadership appointments, was the primary cause that lead to the drafting of the Declaration of Independence and mostly make up the complaints against Britain listed in within it. The limited say that they were allowed over such matters, which many of the drafters felt were unmoral and unjust due to philosophical ideas they held, had many taking a strong stance on limited and controlled government run by the people instead of running the people.