"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. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness."
Beautiful words, thank you USA. For all the flaws, and the criticisms, you still are the repositary of the idea that government is the extension of the rights of the governed, not governing subjects.
Now to think simply this, can all the powers of government ever be legitimately more than the rights that the citizens have themselves? (self defence) and if so, why? How can government by the people, for the people have rights that the people themselves cannot delegate?
Without the Declaration of Independence, this question may not have been answered for some time - and that is why it is worthwhile to celebrate the 4th of July.