Thing1 had a Social Studies assignment to write a Declaration of Independence from something, and she came up with this:
Declaration of Hammock Independence
IN THE WOODS, BY THE FIRE, December 5, 2011
The unanimous Declaration of the Hammock Hangers:
When in the Course of outdoor events it becomes necessary for hammock hangers to take the separate and equal standing with tenters, to which the Laws of Nature entitle them, respect for the opinions of other backpackers requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all Campers are endowed by the Creator of Forests with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Sleep, Cleanliness and the pursuit of Comfort.
~That the Great Outdoor Provision Companies derive their power from the consent of their customers, the Buyers of Gear,
~That when Modes of Shelter become constricting it is up to the Campers to alter or abolish the gear and adopt a new type of gear whose foundation should be based on the Safety and Comfort of the Campers.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that gear should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all outdoor experience has shown that, unlike car campers, serious ground-pounders are more disposed to suffer, while discomforts are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the inadequate gear to which they have, nonetheless, become accustomed.
But when a long train of back aches, sleepless nights and mud, caused by pursuing invariably the same Rig, becomes as intolerable as absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Gear, and to provide new Gear for their future comfort.
Such has been the patient sufferance of these Campers; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Shelter. The history of the present Great Outdoor Provision Companies is a history of repeated Stocking of Products designed to be used on the hard ground, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Conformity over these Uncomfortable Hikers.
To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a Camping World.
We have been compelled to awaken from dreams of Hammocks - the most wholesome and necessary for the public good - with stiff joints, lying inside wet tents, on the muddy ground.
We cannot remove all the lumps, twigs, and rocks, or otherwise make the ground smooth or level. Therefore, we are deprived of Sleep, endowed to us by our Creator, while lying on an inclined surface.
Those Campers who have handicaps, such as back or leg defects, must either eschew camping altogether, or suffer all the more.
The obtained stiff joints only hurt worse during Hikes, the very thing we do to promote peace and happiness.
Upon resting our gear on the ground, it is inevitable that it should become wet, muddy, and dirty.
Campers must pack the unclean gear, which is to be forced in with other clean gear, and so the grit and water spread their evil through out all the gear.
Whenever it should rain while the Backpacker has a tent set up, it is common for the tent eventually to become swimming in a puddle.
Even with the invention of environmentally friendly tree huggers, our adherence to the Leave No Trace philosophy has been called into question. Unlike tents, which leave behind an area of flora thoroughly compressed and flattened, with hammock hangers, only the soles of their shoes touch the ground.
In every stage of these Oppressions against hammock hangers, We have reasoned with Companies in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been ignored. A Store, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Retail Chain, is unfit to be the local provisioner of a people free to hang from trees.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our Tenter brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by State Park Rangers to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our need for shelter and comfort. We have appealed to frontier justice, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common enjoyment of the Forest to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our campfires and camaraderie.
The Tenters too have been deaf to the voice of Progress. We must, therefore, hang our own hammocks, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, welcome at Mealtime, and respectful of our Sleep.
We, therefore, the Hammock Hangers, in the woods, Assembled around the Fire, appealing to the Creator of the Forest for the trees from which we hang, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good Hikers of these Trails, solemnly publish and declare,
That these united Campers are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent Hangers, that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the Shelter of Tents, and that all fabric and other connection between them and Tenters, is and ought to be threadbare; and that as Free and Independent Hangers, they have full Power to levitate themselves, conclude Naps, contract for Gear, establish Camp, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent Hikers may of right do.
— And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of Creator of Forests, we mutually pledge to each other our Outdoor Lives, our Good Fortunes, and our sacred Trail Magic.