Thursday, July 28, 2016

Throwback Thursday: What women want

Most of you are probably familiar with the stories that continue to come out, pointing to an "epidemic" (I think that's the word they used) of student-teacher sex affairs. Of particular interest to many was the number of female teachers who had become involved with young male students, many of them in their early teens. Some call these teenage boys "abused," others consider them "lucky." Whatever, clearly the answer to ending this scandal is to allow teachers to marry - wait a minute, my mistake; it's allowing priests to marry that's supposed to end sexual abuse of teenage boys.

Clearly, if we learn anything from this whole mess, it's that the theory that allowing priests to marry will eliminate the pedophile scandal is nothing but a red herring. First of all, it's not pedophilia but pederasty that drove the Church's scandal - that and a rejection by the priests involved of Catholic teaching.

This, however, is a matter for another day. What interests so many about this teacher abuse study is a fundamental question of human curiosity: what do these grown women see in teenage boys? There's something almost nauseating about the whole thing. What I find interesting about it is how this behavior contrasts so dramatically with how women used to behave, or at least how they were portrayed in popular culture. Forget for a minute whether or not that pop culture portrayal was an accurate one; what mattered, in order for the portrayal to be a successful one, was that it was plausible.

Nowhere is that more evident than in pulp detective fiction, especially that from one of the genre's masters, Mickey Spillane, and his greatest creation, Mike Hammer. Hammer is, to put it mildly, a chick magnet (as well as a magnet for bullets, fists, Commies, Mafia, and all sorts of other unsavory characters). And we're not talking about ordinary women here - just beautiful ones. Breathtakingly beautiful ones. Hammer, at first blush, would seem to be the most unlikely object of desire.

He is, by his own admission, not a handsome man. It’s true that women often meet him after he’s been beaten virtually to a pulp by some nefarious perp, who invariably winds up dead, either right away – in the “you should see the other guy” school – or later on, when Hammer fulfills his mission of revenge. It’s clear, though, that Hammer harbors no illusions about his own appearance, even in the best of times.

And yet women literally throw themselves at him. Within minutes of the initial meeting, they’re tossing off suggestions and bon mots at him that would make a sailor blush. To these invitations Hammer often reacts lewdly, taking advantage of some, disdaining others. It must be nice to pick and choose that way.

Hammer is by no means unique in the world of detective fiction. Philip Marlowe, for one, has the same, shall we say, problem (especially when he’s played by Humphrey Bogart), and easy sex with loose women is a staple of both pulp and mainstream mysteries. Even Nick Charles, he of the Thin Man series, is one of those men who women want and men want to be like. Nick is considerably smoother and more handsome than most of them, however, plus he has Myrna Loy to come home to, and so he remains above those kinds of temptation.

Nevertheless, what is it about these characters that causes beautiful women – far more beautiful than the men are handsome – to throw themselves at them with a speed worthy of a Puccini opera? The reason for this animal magnetism, implicit in the Hammer books, is a simple one: manliness. Hammer is a real man, not a fake – a man who knows what he wants, knows how to get it, and, most important, isn’t afraid to take it.

And this is what brings us back around to the central question asked at the beginning – why the epidemic of female teacher-male student affairs? What is it that these older women – some barely older, some much older – could possibly find of interest in these boys? One theory that I find plausible is that implicit in these actions is a rejection of modern malehood – the lack of manliness so prevalent in men today. As the metrosexual (if that term isn’t already passé) becomes a dominant archetype of the modern man, more and more women yearn for that old-style masculinity found in the likes of Hammer and others. Enough with men who seek to be in touch with their “feminine side.” To many women, this breeds doubt, uncertainty, an unwillingness to take the initiative – hardly qualities that make a man truly attractive. Hugh Grant may be the ideal man for those tissue-drenching chick flicks that Lifetime and Hallmark live on, but it’s not hard to imagine that a real relationship based on that Hugh Grant character would lead to frustration and exasperation before too long.

So, confronted with the lack of “real men” out there, and dismayed by the alternative - young men wrapped up in rude, crude and boorish Maxim-like behavior, women reject the choices presented to them by conventional society and instead turn to the raw material, the stuff that their dreams can truly be made of. In the handsome, virile boy in their classroom they find a boy eager to learn, eager to please, with much to offer in the physical sense; but also one not yet corrupted by sensitivity training. Perhaps he’s a rugged jock, or a boy who exhibits all the hesitant masculine boisterousness that teenage boys usually have. Or he’s untapped ground, one who can be shaped not by the demands of society to emasculate himself, but by the desires of a woman who thinks (however misguided) she can teach him how to be a real man.

This kind of thing is really nothing new however, as is shown by Richard Strauss’ comic opera masterpiece Der Rosenkavalier. The subject matter in this story, written in 1911 but set in 1740s Vienna, was the source of some controversy as well. In it, we have the Marshallin, a charming but aging noblewoman, who is involved with Octavian, described as “a handsome young man with an eye for beautiful women.” Through a series of impossibly convoluted twists and turns, Octavian loses his heart to the beautiful young Sophie, who herself is engaged to the inept and repulsive Baron von Lerchenau.

Although the Marschallin is captivated by her affair with Octavian and falls in love with him, she knows that eventually he will leave her for a younger woman - one more his age. Eventually, this happens, and in the heart-wrenching trio "Hab' mir's gelobt" she releases Octavian to follow his heart and go to Sophie, saying she loves him so much she only wants happiness for him, even if it is with another woman.

With this ending, Strauss hints at the natural law of things, that eventually people - especially young ones - gravitate toward those of their own kind, their own age. And I think that what people most strongly object to in these teacher-student affairs is the idea that the young are being robbed of their future, of their natural maturing into the world beyond their youth, in essence being trapped into a lifestyle (and the consequences) long before they're ready to accept - or even understand - that life. Thus, they are not victims of sexual abuse per se, but of the same kind of abuse that we see in advertising campaigns, in peer pressure, in a hundred different ways - the abuse of forcing children to become adults before they're ready. Some would say that the unfortunate, if not ironic, aspect of this is that in the teacher-student case this is often being done by women who refuse to grow up, who yearn instead for their own childhood, free of responsibility.

As I say, I’m no sociologist, so I don’t pretend that this is anything other than a theory that I find compelling. It also suggests, but doesn’t necessarily deal with, the immaturity that these women themselves exhibit, their own failure to grow up and act responsibly. It does, however, answer a great many questions. And undoubtedly it says a lot about the present state of masculinity – or the lack thereof – in the modern male. I don’t know if we should be more worried about this epidemic of schoolhouse abuse, or the cultural forces that may be playing a part in it.

Whatever the case, this whole phenomenon should cause us to look closely at what our culture has become - how we view childhood, what it means to be a "real man" (and how through our culture so many of the natural aspects of manhood are being stripped away), and how for so many nowadays, adulthood is something to be put off as long as possible.

Originally published December 13, 2007

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

"Todo Es Justo En Amor Y Baloncesto"

Charlotte businessman Felix Sabates, a Cuban refugee at the time of Castro's takeover, was unhappy 20 years ago by NASCAR's decision to punish his team (driven by Kyle Petty at the time) over an incident at the Coca-Cola 600 where Petty was penalised for rough driving by intentionally painting the blue and Day-Glo red Coors-sponsored car black with a red stripe and silver bottom, similar to that of Richard Childress Racing's famous No. 3 car, at the next round in Dover, complete with the phrase "Todo Es Justo en Amor Y Carreras" (All is Fair in Love and Motor Racing) next to the Silver Bullet labeling on the side of the car, at the June Dover race that year.

The 70-year old currently owns a Mercedes dealership in Charlotte and also owns stakes in Chip Ganassi Racing and the current Charlotte Hornets.  He had previously owned minority interest in what is now the New Orleans Pelicans.*

The NBA's decision to pull the All-Star Game out of Charlotte over the North Carolina legislature's common sense bill to block the City of Charlotte's attempt to allow men in women's restrooms in a clear example of post-Obergefell advancement of erotic liberty over all, led to Mr. Sabates sending an e-mail being incensed with the decision to Raycom.  A few quotes make sense, but because of how some of this e-mail was sent "on the fly" by the native Cuban, I have cleaned it up for grammatical reasons:

“Our Mayor opened a can of worms, who knows why? Our city council is the one to blame for our losing the NBA All Star game, none of this would have happened if not for a very few minority forcing our supposed city leaders into creating a problem that never really existed, there will always be another election, they better pray a very few can get them re-elected. What is wrong with a person using a bathroom provided for the sex the[y] were born with . . . don’t force eight-year old children to be exposed to having to share bathroom facilities with people that don’t share the organs they were born with, this is plain wrong, this could cause irreparable damages to a children’s that don’t understand why they have to see what God did not mean for them to witness, we have some very confused business as well as political humans that frankly have made this a political issue rather then moral issues, SHAME ON THEM."

"I am really upset and disappointed that the majority of Charlotte Citizens are (being) penalised for their own personal gains of very few, many thousands of people will remember the NBA for giving in to demands from self-serving individuals that have no real reasons, nor do they understand how thousands of children could be affected, and possibly have long-lasting damages by what could happen in those bathrooms."

Felix Sabates has just spoken for fans by standing up to the biggest bullies in the world -- the sexual perversion lobby, and its demands.  Ask the people who voted for marriage laws only to be denied by those few cities.  He stood up for all of us incensed by the sexual freedom is the only freedom activists.

NOTE:  For purposes of regional standards, the Charlotte area is a 16-county region consisting of Mecklenberg, Gaston, Cabarrus, Iredell, Rowan, Cleveland, Lincoln, Stanly in North Carolina, and York, Chester, Lancaster, and Union in South Carolina.

* A 2014 NBA revisionist history decision is not recognised.  The NBA has played around revisionism with the history of the New Orleans Pelicans (founded in 1988, was in Charlotte until 2002, New Orleans 2003-05 and 2007-present, three cities -- New Orleans, Oklahoma City, and Baton Rouge -- from 2005-07 because of Hurricane Katrina, known as the Hornets until 2013) and the Charlotte Hornets (founded in 2004, was the Bobcats until 2014).  The revisionism is not recognised here.

Friday, July 22, 2016

Thoughts on Cleveland, post-convention

I wish I had time to compose a more thoughtful piece on this week's Republican convention, particularly Donald Trump's speech last night, but I don't, and since I don't get paid for this (more's the pity), we'll have to make due with a few random thoughts. There are some striking similarities, though, between 2016 and 1968, which became especially apparent last night, and I'll try to write more about that next week.
  1. The Trump speech was excellent. It probably read better on paper than it did in The Donald's delivery, but the content was very solid, and if it had been read in a more polished, professional way - well, that just wouldn't have been Donald Trump, would it? It would be contrary to what the entire Trump campaign has been about.

  2. Having said that, I though he was more statesmanlike than we've seen him, and far more specific than we've heard him in the past. Am I saying he was statesmanlike? Not exactly; it's as I said above - it's Trump's version of statesmanlike. 

  3. "My opponent asks her supporters to recite a three-word loyalty pledge. It reads: 'I’m With Her'. I choose to recite a different pledge. My pledge reads: 'I'm with you - the American people." That really is quite good, isn't it?

  4. The usual suspects among the Republican establishment are having the usual hissy-fits about the speech, proving once again how out of touch they are. Trump may not win, but if he doesn't, it won't be for the reasons they mention  Has there ever been a more clueless group of individuals out there, getting paid big bucks to demonstrate they're right even less often than weather forecasters?

  5. That goes for you, National Review and Weekly Standard. To think I used to put stock in your opinions.

  6. Emmett Tyrrell at The American Spectator still knows what the magazine stands for - he ought to, since he founded it - but some of the rest over there? More clueless than  Alicia Silverstone.

  7. I'm talking about you, Aaron Goldstein.

  8. I supported Ted Cruz in the Texas primary, but I always was troubled by the bad things others had to say about him - opportunistic, shifty, lean and hungry. He did nothing to cover himself in honor during his speech. I think the word "weasel" most quickly comes to mind.

  9. It's true that Ronald Reagan did not verbally endorse Gerald Ford in 1976 - but he appeared with him on the podium on the convention's final night. As far as sending a message, that picture says a thousand times more powerful than any word he might have uttered. Meaning, Ted, if you want to think of yourself as another Reagan, perhaps you'd better study your subject more carefully first.

  10. That convention in 1976 was a lot meaner, too. There were fistfights on the floor! These delegates nowadays don't know how they're supposed to act anymore. If you're going to fight, fight!

  11. Ivanka Trump has quite a career in politics ahead of her, if she wants it.

  12. President Trump? Don't bet against it.

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Throwback Thursday: On civility

Im still impressed--if that's the word--by the way in which the Internet facilitates idiocy. Or, in the words of an unknown commenter quoted in Daniel J. Solove's forthcoming book The Future of Reputation: Gossip, Rumor, and Privacy on the Internet, 'The Internet makes fools into stars and stars into fools.' "

- Terry Teachout 

Originally published August 21, 2007

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Opera Wednesday

Short and sweet - Maria Callas (above) and Tito Gobbi perform the spectacular finale to Act 2 of Tosca in a special television broadcast from the Royal Opera House in London. This never gets old.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Flashback Friday: This Just In

(Pictured) A recreation of the fateful moment from last Thursday, demonstrating how Fred Smedrick's right finger headed toward a clearly-illuminated elevator button.

Local Man Offers Public Apology After Re-Hitting Already Lit Elevator Button

MAHTOMEDI, MN -- Local window shade salesman Fred Smedrick has issued a public apology after he re-hit an already lit elevator button in the parking ramp of the IDS Center in Minneapolis last Thursday.

"I could tell the second I did it that I had really mucked up,” said Smedrick, who was visiting downtown after a trip to the State Fair with his wife, Maude. “The mood in the elevator shifted immediately. When we got on there had been smiles and polite nods. But when I reached over and punched the up button to go to the 2nd level - even though it was already plainly illuminated - you could feel a sudden, stark chill. It was as if people felt I didn’t trust the work they’d already done, that somehow me, the new guy on board, was disrespecting them. It was just horrible. One guy, the way he was looking at me, I could tell he was thinking, "I'll bet you don't even remember where you parked your car." I just kept my head down and waited for our floor. It couldn’t come fast enough.”

Fred plans to take out a newspaper ad to publicly express his regret, and has decided to take the stairs exclusively the next time he's in the city.

Originally published September 29, 2006

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Major scandal brewing at a "Life Enhancement Centre": is this what you want in a church?

The leader of a popular Life Enhancement Centre that boasts of 32,000 weekly attendance in 17 venues representing seven markets – Western Carolinas (Greenville, Spartanburg, Anderson, Asheville), Columbia, Charleston, Pee Dee (Florence and Myrtle Beach), Charlotte, Augusta, and Savannah, has been involved in alcoholism that led to his termination recently.  However, the more serious issues with this venue that boasts of being a church are not just the alcoholism that led to their charismatic minister's termination as it is the Life Enhancement Centre being what can be called a “McChurch” if there ever was one (considering a newspaper was called, in its early years, “McPaper”) with those venues, as its base format is one central location is in Anderson (near enemy territory, a reason why I often say I'm at a Chevrolet dealership when everyone else is wearing powder blue Etihad Airways shirts) and the 16 satellite venues all feature one rock band and vocalists playing the same set list (all 16 venues are given the same set list to play), and some assistants (not always ordained), while the church service plays off a giant video screen, sometimes live and sometimes on tape.  (The live services from Anderson typically take place at their regularly assigned times;  if there is no service in Anderson at the time, it is transmitted on tape to that venue)  You can see the attitude of the venue in these clips of the said Life Enhancement Centre.  So many new churches in our area have copied that venue's concept with loud rock bands, and even some older churches have adopted the rock band similar to them, though often it is Universal Music's Top 40 hits that dominate.

Catholics in 1967 had The Second Vatican Ecumenical Council, also known as Vatican II, that included the Musicam Sacram,where Sections 62 and 63 of Vatican II could be cited to ask if these pieces from the self-help venue in question would pass mustard in being approved by this meeting.  But it's not just Catholics, primarily led by Mr. Ratzinger (the Pope Emertius Benedict XVI), that would not be pleasing with these pieces.  Mr. Mohler and Mr. MacArthur would probably be in unison with regards to the music played at that venue.  How many of these songs used at that “McChurch” would ever be approved in a house of worship?

None of them, I believe, could be approved.  Each would be given the long illegal clue buzzer on Pyramid (not used in the Strahan version, which is a double short buzzer).  Judge for yourself.  I cannot see the virtue in these songs played at that Life Enhancement Centre at a mass, let alone a church service.  Yet we see people defend these services, when so many clones of this McChurch have developed (one such meets in a former grocery store building as part of what has been a purging of grocers here to two – the entire area where their version meets in in an area 25 years ago was just trees, and all stores opened in that area have closed – welcome to Sixth District Relegation, and they have a satellite campus 20 miles away in the remnants of a fairly recently built auto dealership building).  Most of these venues do not state its denominational affiliation, are sometimes called Community Church, and in some cases do not even state they are a house of worship.  Many of them you can walk inside the doors and see a stale nightclub atmosphere or a theatre setting;  in some cases, they meet in government school auditoria or gymnasia.  In the case of these chains, they have one rock band play the same set list everywhere and the service is played on a video from the central location.

As for this credentialed singer, I see no virtue in any of these Top 40 hits being used in church.  In one case, they played the theme to a raunchy movie, and a friend responded, “Get out the whips and blindfolds!”  This resembles a nightclub, not a church!

Example 1, Example 2. Example 3. Example 4. And example 5.

Is this what you think when you see a church service?  There are also numerous other bad songs from the Top 40 charts that they have used, and none of them make any sense.  As Mr. MacArthur says, the Biblically mandated teachings of the Bible in music has been ignored.

Oh, by the way:  In regards to an It's About TV column regarding the WSB-TV Independence Day parade of the past, the parade ended because WSB wanted a more diverse region to represent other than just the city proper;  for example, sports teams with Atlanta in their name no longer represent the city anymore.  (The Braves will move to Vinings next season outside 285, and the Boston Bruins' AA affiliate in the ECHL, the Gwinnett Gladiators in Duluth, changed its identity to Atlanta in September 2015, though staying in Duluth.)  They wanted more representation of Gwinnett and Cobb Counties, and not just represent the DeKalb and Fulton Counties.  Logistically, I cannot see it being held on Peachtree Street now because of Peachtree cleanup (and I ran it again this year).

Furthermore, WSB-TV is regarded as on of the most popular markets for ABC's struggling The View; the show wins convincingly the 11 AM time slot weekdays, surprising since in most markets, CBS' long running The Price Is Right (since 1972), which has been at the 11 AM time slot since 1979, wins its slot.  However, the 1990's television realignment has given the liberal gabbers a convincing win over the long-running game because of the weakness of CBS affiliates after their relegation to minor network status during the era.  Milwaukee and Detroit are two other notable markets where the same problem exists to this day where CBS could not find an affiliate after the 1994 relegation had CBS in virtually a last-minute attempt to find a new affiliate after losing major markets to Fox.

CBS found Channel 46, now WGCL, but they are typically fourth, fifth, or seven sixth place in Atlanta.  They regained major network status in 1998, but the damage was done;  The View was designed to capitalise on weak CBS affiliates that hurt Price, since ABC's way to capture the time slot that CBS has long held since 1979 was with a network talk show.  At the time, only one network daytime game show was remaining (CBS has since added a second), and with CBS having weak affiliates that were unavailable in outlying areas in major markets, The View has long beaten Price in those affected markets; with Atlanta being one of the best examples of ratings domination by the femme talk show. WSB needs their talk show to beat what has, since 2008 (because of the late start to Season 36 of Price with the new host, the season ran from mid-October to mid-July;  the experiment became permanent since 2010) WGCL's broadcast of the game show that has, in recent years, aired a new episode on the holiday (July 2 or 3 if it falls on a weekend).

Friday, July 8, 2016

In memoriam: Dallas, et al

The Adagietto from Mahler's Symphony 5 in C sharp minor, with the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Leonard Bernstein.

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

Uh, why do we celebrate Independence Day again?


Proceeds from the sales of these [special design Independence Day] jerseys and caps are going to MLB’s Welcome Back Veterans charity. That’s very nice, but it’s also the latest example of MLB promoting bad history and bad civics, because Independence Day is not about honoring the military. It’s the anniversary of when the Declaration of Independence was ratified by the Continental Congress. A more appropriate move would be to donate funds to the National Archives (where the original Declaration is preserved), or to donate funds to Independence Hall National Historical Park (site of Independence Hall, where the Declaration was debated and adopted), or to support American history programs in public schools (which could teach kids, among other things, that Independence Day is not about the military). Instead, MLB has yet again chosen to conflate patriotism with support for the military — a terrible piece of political messaging. Very disappointing.

Couldn't agree more. Words mean things, and special dates commemorate special occasions. At the risk of sounding non-patriotic to those of a knee-jerk disposition, the Fourth of July, commonly known in the United States as Independence Day, has nothing to do with the military. You could argue that the independence of the United States is ultimately due to the military, in that they achieved victory over the British at Yorktown, but even in this case the American victory is due more to the greatness of one man - George Washington - than to a generic military.

But the point remains. Independence Day is perhaps the only holiday we have that actually honors politicians - the men willing to pledge their lives, their fortunes, and their sacred honor in the name of an independence that no country had ever won under similar circumstances. These men - unlike our politicians of today, perhaps - were willing to risk it all, knowing that charges of treason, and possible execution, were the certain result should their gamble fail.

Using Independence Day as yet another occasion to honor the military, which was also the subliminal message of MLB's game at Fort Bragg on Sunday, is just plain bad history. It is no disservice to the military to point this out. We have Memorial Day to honor those who gave their lives for their country, Veterans Day to honor those who have served in the past, and Armed Forces Day to honor those currently serving. That's pretty much all-inclusive, don't you think? What we're supposed to be honoring on the Fourth of July is America's declaration of independence from the United Kingdom. The message to Major League Baseball - and to everyone else out there who uses the day as another excuse to dress in camo and build up the military - is that you ought to think before you act, even if you'd be doing it for the first time. Cheap "patriotism" is no way to honor the Fourth.

On the other hand, since we seem to be losing our freedom at a consistent rate, perhaps the confusion is understandable. Maybe there just isn't that much independence worth celebrating anymore.

Monday, July 4, 2016

The Declaration of Independence

The numerous cases that have asked us if the Declaration of Independence should even be celebrated Monday by just the pushing of sexual freedom over all have forced us to read the document our Founding Fathers posted 240 years ago, because the same things happening with the Founding Fathers then are happening now again. Read this, and consider the absurdities of the "pass the law, get elites to overturn the laws"; let's look back at the document and consider we are turning to what led to this document's adoption 240 years ago.

The Unanimous Declaration of the Thirteen United States of America

In Congress, July 4, 1776

When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.

We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness; that, to secure these rights, governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed; that whenever any form of government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the right of the people to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new government, laying its foundation on such principles, and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their safety and happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shown that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same object, evinces a design to reduce them under absolute despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such government, and to provide new guards for their future security. Such has been the patient sufferance of these colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former systems of government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute tyranny over these states. To prove this, let facts be submitted to a candid world.

He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.

He has forbidden his governors to pass laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his assent should be obtained; and, when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.

He has refused to pass other laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of representation in the legislature, a right inestimable to them, and formidable to tyrants only.

He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.

He has dissolved representative houses repeatedly, for opposing, with manly firmness, his invasions on the rights of the people.

He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the legislative powers, incapable of annihilation, have returned to the people at large for their exercise; the state remaining, in the mean time, exposed to all the dangers of invasions from without and convulsions within.

He has endeavored to prevent the population of these states; for that purpose obstructing the laws for naturalization of foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migration hither, and raising the conditions of new appropriations of lands.

He has obstructed the administration of justice, by refusing his assent to laws for establishing judiciary powers.

He has made judges dependent on his will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.

He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harass our people and eat out their substance.

He has kept among us, in times of peace, standing armies, without the consent of our legislatures.

He has affected to render the military independent of, and superior to, the civil power.

He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our Constitution and unacknowledged by our laws, giving his assent to their acts of pretended legislation:

For quartering large bodies of armed troops
among us;

For protecting them, by a mock trial, from punishment for any murders which they should commit on the inhabitants of these states;

For cutting off our trade with all parts of the world;

For imposing taxes on us without our consent;

For depriving us, in many cases, of the benefits of trial by jury;

For transporting us beyond seas, to be tried for pretended offenses;

For abolishing the free system of English laws in a neighboring province, establishing therein an arbitrary government, and enlarging its boundaries, so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these colonies;

For taking away our charters, abolishing our most valuable laws, and altering fundamentally the forms of our governments;

For suspending our own legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.

He has abdicated government here, by declaring us out of his protection and waging war against us.

He has plundered our seas, ravaged our coasts, burned our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.

He is at this time transporting large armies of foreign mercenaries to complete the works of death, desolation, and tyranny already begun with circumstances of cruelty and perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the head of a civilized nation.

He has constrained our fellow-citizens, taken captive on the high seas, to bear arms against their country, to become the executioners of their friends and brethren, or to fall themselves by their hands.

He has excited domestic insurrection among us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers the merciless Indian savages, whose known rule of warfare is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes, and conditions.

In every stage of these oppressions we have petitioned for redress in the most humble terms; our repeated petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.

Nor have we been wanting in our attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them, from time to time, of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity; and we have conjured them, by the ties of our common kindred, to disavow these usurpations which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too, have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity which denounces our separation, and hold them as we hold the rest of mankind, enemies in war, in peace friends.

WE, THEREFORE, the REPRESENTATIVES of the UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, in General Congress assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the name and by the authority of the good people of these colonies solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of right ought to be, FREE AND INDEPENDENT STATES; that they are absolved from all allegiance to the British crown and that all political connection between them and the state of Great Britain is, and ought to be, totally dissolved; and that, as free and independent states, they have full power to levy war, conclude peace, contract alliances, establish commerce, and do all other acts and things which independent states may of right do. And for the support of this declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor.

[Signed by] JOHN HANCOCK [President]

New Hampshire

Massachusetts Bay

Rhode Island


New York

New Jersey



of Carrollton.


North Carolina

South Carolina

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