Created equal

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The phrase "created equal", as in "all people are created equal" – the more egalitarian form of "all men are created equal" as found in the US Declaration of Independence – is unfortunately a somewhat ambiguous phrase.

It can mean either of the following:

  1. People are all the same in some essential way – all equally capable of making good decisions, for example
  2. People should all be equal before the law – the law should not treat one person differently than another because of some arbitrary attribute that person has (gender, race, sexual orientation, wealth, and so on).


There's some evidence of propaganda that conflates the two meanings in order to make the following argument:

  • All people are created equal.
  • That means all people are equally capable of making good decisions.
  • Therefore: nobody should be deprived of their rights either for their own protection or for the protection of others.

We're currently looking for a clear example of this argument being used in the wild.