Essay About The Constitutional Convention
Essay About The Constitutional Convention
All American know about their right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness as it is one of this great country's founding principles; however, it has not always stood for what the people define it as in modern times. While today the big three is applied to women, men, and people of all races and backgrounds it’s original meaning was directed solely towards white men. Originally, it was that “all men are created equal” and it were men who held “the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness”(Thomas Jefferson). Thomas held no such belief that these things applied to anyone except for white men, and that everyone else was just standing in the way of that right meant just for the white man. The men of America stage a revolution so that America would the the people's place and not Englands, and yet no one thought twice about giving back anything they took from the Native Americans. No one was inclined to think about freeing African slaves so that they could pursue life for themselves. The sole reason being those people weren't white, some may be men but they were not white. Throughout America's history the meaning of LLPH(Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of happiness) has excluded many throughout, but it has also continued to evolve and grow as time has passed.
Just barely one hundred and thirty years ago their LLPH entitled them to undermine the power of other countries as long as it was beneficial to their pursuit. Hawaii wasn’t always the coveted American vacation destination. As a matter of fact, it used to be its own country with its own monarchy and rules. However, Americans only saw Hawaii as a “Hawaiian pear [that] is[was] fully ripe” just waiting for “the United states to pluck it”(John L. Steven’s). In American eyes the people of Hawaii were not really people, just savages on land that the US wants for its own greed. A Tree grows fruit to spread its seeds and grow more trees, but the fruit the trees make is often eaten by other creatures and are unable to fulfill his own purpose. Queen Liliukalani is the pear tree that wants her fruit to fulfil its purpose, and the Americans are the animals who want the fruit to feed themselves. As a result, when the Queen tried to restore Hawaii's power, Americans saw this as a threat to their LLPH, so they staged a revolution in her country effectively cutting her down to the trunk so the greedy animals can just take all the fruit they want. The pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness didn’t apply to the Hawaiians in the eyes of the Americans, because they were not Americans they held the right to any of it in their eyes.
While the concept of the pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness had originally been very narrow, over time it has grown in positive ways as well. Like the 19th Amendment, which was passed on June 4th 1919, that officially gave women the right to vote. Indeed it was one of many integral events that has helped shape LLPH into a more inclusive definition. However, sometimes waiting for something to happen isn't the right way to go, sometimes people just have to take it. The Flappers didn’t wait around for something to happen “they broke through many of the restraints on women--in fashions, in society, and in politics”(TFGB). These women didn’t wait for men to acknowledge that women had just as much right to LLPH as they did, they just went out and took it. The Flappers are a testament that nothing is gained by sitting back and waiting, that actions move society forward. Indeed their bold actions changed the way many people thought, and they took the first and most important steps to having the rest of America acknowledge women's right to LLPH. Therefore, flappers played a fairly big role in changing the concept of LLPH for the better, adding more width to the initially narrow concept.
Nothing ever starts out perfect, and that's ok because with time comes growth. With this in mind, while the original meaning of the pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness may have only been beneficial to white men and as an excuse to justify greedy action. It has also evolved to become something better, a phrase almost no one is excluded. What's truly important is that people should continue striving to make these ideals better and better so that more and more people feel they can pursue life, liberty, and happiness.