Separate and Equal

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Last week I went to the Constitution Center to hear Dr. Danielle Allen of the Princeton Institute of Advanced Studies discuss her latest book, Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality. She says, “In just 1,337 words, the Declaration changed the course of the modern world, but it is now rarely read from start to finish.”The Declaration begins: “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.”Her most fascinating point is that the Declaration uses the phrase “separate and equal.”

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