After reading the Communist Manifesto, I mentioned that fact to someone and commented that we never read the other side‘s Declaration of Independence in school, not even to mock it. Then I realized that I’d never read The Declaration of Independence all the way through. Shame on me. Of course, I knew the opening passage:
When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
I also knew the closing:
And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.
I realized though, that I didn’t know much of anything between the opening and the closing.