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Argumentative Essay On The Declaration Of Independence

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Jess Hill
Professor Kesler
English 1101
Revised Argumentative Essay
From a Draft to a Final Copy (DEL) The editing process of Jefferson’s first draft led to the removal of roughly around 400 words. In early 1776, Thomas Jefferson wrote the Draft of the Declaration of Independence. Jefferson's work went through a thorough process of editing and correcting by John Adams and Benjamin Franklin before the release of the final version in 1776. The purpose of the document is to unite the citizens and convince them to rally against the tyrannous king of Great Britain. Franklin and Adams edit this document in a specific way so that it does not exclude any of the oppressed. They accomplish this by removing certain statements about independence,
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Jefferson writes, "they derive rights inherent and inalienable, among which are... the spirit of happiness" (187). Adams and Franklin changed this part because they knew that not everyone would find happiness in their lives after independence from Great Britain. They did not want to lie by saying that every citizen would be happy. Instead, the finished document reads, "with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are... the Pursuit of Happiness" (The Declaration of Independence & The Constitution of the United States 53). This is a very clever change made by John Adams and Benjamin Franklin. They know that everyone has the innate desire to achieve happiness. Not everybody will discover happiness, but it is something that every human being has the desire to find. Some passages regarding religion are removed from Jefferson's original draft to appeal to the non-religious citizens. Jefferson writes, "We hold these truths to be sacred & undeniable" (187). Jefferson believes that these truths are obvious and can easily be seen through God and His teachings. Franklin and Adams decide to rephrase this passage to give it a less religious meaning. After the editing process, the final draft reads, "We hold these truths to be self-evident" (53). This passage was edited to show that these truths are not only seen by the religious; (DEL) Adams and Franklin knew that this passage would have undoubtedly caused a divide between the religious and
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