Summary of “Thomas Jefferson and the Meanings of Liberty”Thomas Jefferson the writer of the Declaration of Independence, the Virginia statutes of religious freedom; a noble man, husband, and owner of slaves.
These are all things that one could hear about Thomas Jefferson, so one wouldn’t be surprised to know that he had his own thoughts about the meanings of liberty.In the Declaration of Independence Jefferson states that all men are created equal. This is meant as it reads, that all men, no matter the race have equal rights. This was a revolutionary concept that was not accepted fully for a long time.
Jefferson really was a noble man who supposedly respected all races, he even a relationship with one of his slaves. Another thing meant by all men are created equal is that it was really meant as all mankind, trying to include women into the mix of people with equal rights.Presentism is one putting his or her own generation’s views, on what is good and bad, onto history. This phenomenon happens all the time with historians, to help prove their point or by accident.
When looking at a scenario where Jefferson had a relationship with a 14 year old slave, most people would find that disgusting and revolting yet the reality is that he loved the girl.Thomas Jefferson wrote about the pursuit of happiness, that every man, women, and child has the right to be happy. Now this is not as revolutionary as being in a relationship with someone from the opposite race yet it is something that cant be skipped over when you talk about liberty. This right is something that the colonists thought at that point in time England was taking away from them.
Therefore it gets put into the document separating them from England.