Declaration of the Rights of Men and of Citizens

1751 WordsOct 8, 20148 Pages
THE DECLARATION OF THE RIGHTS OF MEN AND OF CITIZENS - AN ANALYSIS IN FIVE PARTS EQUALITY The Declaration of The Rights of Man and of Citizens begins with a clear stipulation of intrinsic freedom and equality in every man. Equality, therefore, seems to be an appropriate place to begin. The Declaration defines our equality in relation to our rights, such that we are all born with the same entitlements and among them the right to perpetuate such rights throughout our lives. Each and every one of us is entitled to the expression of the will of a community (which, according to Rousseau, is the collective will of the constituent individuals). In a similar light, the law is to regard each individual without bias; performing its duty of…show more content…
What gives another man the power to wield the scales of the law, is he superior to any other man that he may decide his counterpart 's fate? Who has the prerogative to empower another man with the sword and shield of the law? According to the declaration, "all citizens have a right…either personally, or by their representatives, in its formation". So the populace, by right, has power over the law, which in turn, by right, has power over the populace. Ideally, this ascertains the equality of power. A cyclic system where the law changes with the people and adjusts itself accordingly as the essence of man itself changes; where any change in the attitudes of the people is reflected in a change in the law. Equilibrium is, therefore, maintained and this allows elasticity and exposes duality in the expression of power. This is by no means a moral system. By this definition, the law is as fickle as man and serves as an inadequate canon, an imitation canon to reassure us that we are a moral and just society. Though the Declaration implores the equal distribution of law, all being equal in its sight, it has managed to allow the atrocities committed in the past. The witch hunts, slave trade, oppression of women, exploitation of children and the inquisition are merely a few events where the latter section of the clause ("[the law] should be the same to all") has been unpardonably
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