The Declaration of Independence, written by Thomas Jefferson, and The Second Treatise on Civil Government by John Locke, are two similar works. Lockes work seems to have had an influence on Jefferson when he wrote the Declaration of Independence. Both works were written on government, what it should and should not be. Locke brings the view that the state exists to preserve the natural rights of its citizens. When governments fail in that task, citizens have the right–and sometimes the duty–to withdraw their support and event to rebel. Locke maintained that the state of nature was a happy and tolerant one, that the social contract preserved the preexistent natural rights of the individual to life, liberty, and property, and that the enjoyment of private rights– the pursuit of happiness– led, in civil society, to the common good. Lockes form of government is simple, yet confusing. Lockes government is broken down into four main areas, the State of Nature ( SN ), the State of War ( SW ), Civil Society ( CS ), and Political Society ( PS ). Locke begins by recognizing the differences between power, in general, and political power in particular. Locke believes political power to be, the power of a magistrate over a subject. (2) The subject remains under the magistrates rule by choice. This brings about the State of Nature. The SN is a state of perfect freedom, no one is controlling others and no one is being controlled, everyone is equal. Locke comes to say that the only way someone can rule over us is if we let them. By doing this we are not abandoning our SN, but remaining in it. It is ones choice to let another preside over them. Our SN is threatened though because we do not have complete control, therefore we come into the State of War. Under SW we have taken away others SN or given up our own. For us to get it back we come into Civil Society. By lendin…
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