Essay about Phi-286 Mod 3 Wa 1

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Module 3 Written Assignment 1

Can you show how Jefferson's theory of revolution (found in its shortest form in the Declaration of Independence) follows from John Locke's theory of government? Could it follow from Hobbes's theory of government? Under what circumstances?

Thomas Jefferson's theory of revolution seems to follow specific criteria from Thomas Hobbes original foundation, which was further expanded upon by John Locke and ultimately fine tuned by Thomas Jefferson. To get an understanding how these three philosophies follow one another, we must begin at the documented source; Thomas Hobbes.

Thomas Hobbes lived during revolutionary times, beginning with the overthrow and demise of the English King, Charles 1, in 1641
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Locke seems to build upon Hobbes' ideals describing within the law of Nature, all men are equal and are in a state of perfect freedom to order their own actions. However, it seems Locke clearly understands mans desire for more and temptation to violate human rights of others for personal gain and therefore, inevitable disputes in which life, liberty, and property are in question, laws are established to protect and uphold ones rights. Locke divulges further by stating the law of nature confirms every one has a right to punish transgressors of law to such a degree in which it may hinder violations, preserve the innocent and restrain offenders (Newton, 2004). This is where Locke separates himself from Hobbes theories. Locke concedes punishment only to a degree whereas will hinder a transgressor and only restrain an offender. This should not be confused with Hobbes philosophy of an individual having the right to pass judgement and decide a transgressors fate, once a perceived threat has been subdued. Locke's philosophy seems to indicate a vital importance to exhibit reason and tolerance; a law of morals, unlike Thomas Hobbes philosophical view of do as you please because it is your natural right. John Locke's law of morals set forth Thomas Jefferson's theory of revolution.

Thomas Jefferson, eloquently wrote; all men are created equal,

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