segunda-feira, 11 de fevereiro de 2013

The reason for the American Revolution

By Ron Smith

The beginning of the American Revolution
Contrary to popular belief, the American Revolution was not fought because the colonists were taxed without representation. It is true that for years preceding the revolution, taxes and fair representation were the issues that energized patriots. These were the questions that first caused friction between the colonies and England. But no American patriot took up arms to kill a British soldier because he thought his taxes were too high. American patriots took up arms against the British and began the revolution only when — and precisely because — the British attempted to disarm them. The first incident was when the British tried to confiscate stores of gunpowder and weapons to disarm the militia in New England. Almost at the same time (news traveled slowly in those days) the British confiscated the colonists' gunpowder in Williamsburg.The events in New England resulted n bloodshed; in Virginia the bloodshed was averted.But both historic confrontations took place because the British attempted to disarm citizens
March 23, 1775.Patrick Henry gave his famous "give me liberty or give me death" speech.
April 18, 1775.British soldiers set out from Boston to confiscate muskets,gunpowder, and cannons from the colonists. Paul Revere rode out of town to warn the Americans.
April 19, 1775.The British encountered their first resistance by minutemen at Lexington Green. After pushing on to Concord, the British were repelled, andt hen routed, by the American minutemen and sustained casualties.
April 21, 1775.Still unaware of fighting in New England, the governor of Virginia ordered British marines to confiscate all gunpowder held in the public magazine at Williamsburg.
May 2, 1775.Captain Patrick Henry led an armed militia of Virginians on a march to Williamsburg. Soon five thousand men sprang to arms and joined the march.
May 4, 1775.The British agreed to compensate the Virginians for the gunpowder that was confiscated before the armed militia arrived in Williamsburg, thus averting armed conflict.
Two lessons should be noted about these two incidents which really started the American Revolution. First, the British government's attempts to disarm American colonists, even though the colonists had not attacked the British, was considered to be an act of war by the Americans. They knew that if they were successfully disarmed, the British would be unchecked in their attempts to subjugate and enslave them.Second, when the acts of war were perceived, it was not Americans acting under the authority of the British Crown that opposed them. It was ordinary armed citizens —outlaws as the British saw them — who fought.Our country sprang into being and is founded on the principle of ordinary citizens like you and me arming and organizing ourselves to fight tyranny.

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