Grammatical independence simply means that the words constituting the sentence are not acting as a noun or modifier or verb in connection with any other word or words. For example, Harry was late is independent. Became Harry was late is not. Because turns the words into an adverb (more exactly, an adverbial clause). The construction should modify another verb or clause as in The men were delayed in starting because Harry was
1. The fact that Because Harry was late is not independent does not mean it cannot serve as a sentence. In the right context it could effectively stand alone. But it would be a fragment.
To take one more case. They failed to agree is a grammatical sentence. That they failed to agree is not. It is a noun clause and could function as the subject of a verb:
That they failed to agree was unfortunate.
Or as the object of one:
We know that they failed to agree.
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