#5 — Facing Necessity

And Nature’s God

Consider Allen’s description of the way references to the divine evolved during the drafting and editing of the Declaration. On the one hand, the editing process accommodated the different religious beliefs of a number of the Declaration’s authors. It is, in other words, an example of good democratic writing. On the other hand, given the scope of the drafters’ intended audience, these references might have excluded those who didn’t share the theistic and often Christian beliefs of the authors. What challenges does living in community with those who have distinctly different understandings of the divine pose?

Perhaps this is another reason why an invitation to talk about the Declaration makes many people nervous. For this country, the United States, this text is, after all, the so-called ground zero for discussion of how religion and politics intertwine.

Allen, Danielle (2014-06-23). Our Declaration: A Reading of the Declaration of Independence in Defense of Equality (p. 135). Liveright. Kindle Edition.