American Federal Government
14 January 2013
Understanding the Declaration of Independence
The Declaration of Independence is a fundamental document which outlines the standards on which the United States of America was founded on. Within this document, there is a portion detailing the grievances against King George. Understanding these grievances is important to understanding why the Continental Congress wanted to separate from England and strengthens the overall message of the Declaration of Independence.
Within the Declaration of Independence there is a list of twenty-seven grievances directed toward King George. Out of this large list, several grievances stand out strongly or are repeated within the same context as other grievances. One major complaint was that the king was a tyrant. This grievance states, “He has refused his assent to laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good” (Constitution Society). Assent means that he has not provided his approval toward laws that would benefit the colonies. Another primary complaint listed was that King George deprived the colonists of the right of trial by jury. In fact, colonists would have to be transported back to England to be tried for their offenses, including ones that were fabricated. The king also caused problems for actual judges in the colony. The colonists stated, “He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries” (Constitution Society). The king had also obstructed judiciary powers in the colonies by blocking the establishment of laws. The king also imposed taxes on colonists without their approval and prevented the colonists from trading with other countries. Many grievances listed also discuss problems that King George had on any form of legislature in the colonies. It did not matter if the colonists used charters. There is even a complaint detailing how even the province...