Sunday, April 15, 2012

George III wasn't tyrannical?

George Washington was properly named the greatest military foe Great Britain ever had. This is a man who risked his very life and fortune, conducting himself with as much honor as any American has, so a new country could come of the despotism experienced by the colonists. Washington in fact spent so much of his personal fortune on the war that he was short on cash afterward, having to borrow money from a friend to pay off debts before leaving for his inauguration.

Now how can someone, apparently a fellow American, not only be ignorant of those times but even excuse the tyranny?

 

This fool would have made a good apologist for the Crown. He probably thinks the Boston Tea Party was over taxes.

There was nothing of a family relationship. It was more like a Mafia boss hiring thugs to break a store owner's windows, then telling the owner to get new glass from a business that kicks back to the boss. The claim that the British government "payed" for anything is absurd. Colonists built their cities and villages themselves, laboring for the better part of two centuries to create a new civilization out of wilderness. The colonists didn't ask for the armies. Britain and France were at war, but the colonists wanted no part of it. In fact, some colonists had peaceable trading with the French and Indians, and others throughout the Caribbean. The colonies' growing independent prosperity couldn't be tolerated, so George III and his mercantilist advisors started requiring all colonial imports and exports to come through Britain. This facilitated taxes, and it was believed to encourage British prosperity by making it too expensive for colonists from trading with other countries.

It was not lightly that Jefferson, literally risking his own neck, accused George III in the Declaration of Independence: "Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government. The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States."

Colonists had much to fear from French soldiers destroying towns in the name of war, and France's Indian allies. The colonists' worst enemy, though, was the British army allegedly defending them. Colonists' houses were burned if they refused to quarter British soldiers. Their animals were butchered to feed British soldiers, husbands and brothers were sometimes pressed into military service, women were molested, and worse. Jefferson additionally accused, "For protecting them, by a mock Trial from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States." Crimes could have simply been ignored by British officials, but mock trials were a way of inflicting more pain while asserting authority, that those operating under British authority could do so with perfect impunity.

The little-known Declaration of the Necessity and Causes of Taking Up Arms notes what General Gage did to Boston after the battles of Lexington and Concord:
Hostilities, thus commenced by the British troops, have been since prosecuted by them without regard to faith or reputation. -- The inhabitants of Boston being confined within that town by the general their governor, and having, in order to procure their dismission, entered into a treaty with him, it was stipulated that the said inhabitants having deposited their arms with their own magistrate, should have liberty to depart, taking with them their other effects. They accordingly delivered up their arms, but in open violation of honour, in defiance of the obligation of treaties, which even savage nations esteemed sacred, the governor ordered the arms deposited as aforesaid, that they might be preserved for their owners, to be seized by a body of soldiers; detained the greatest part of the inhabitants in the town, and compelled the few who were permitted to retire, to leave their most valuable effects behind.

By this perfidy wives are separated from their husbands, children from their parents, the aged and the sick from their relations and friends, who wish to attend and comfort them; and those who have been used to live in plenty and even elegance, are reduced to deplorable distress.

The general, further emulating his ministerial masters, by a proclamation bearing date on the 12th day of June, after venting the grossest falsehoods and calumnies against the good people of these colonies, proceeds to "declare them all, either by name or description, to be rebels and traitors, to supersede the course of the common law, and instead thereof to publish and order the use and exercise of the law martial." -- His troops have butchered our countrymen, have wantonly burnt Charlestown, besides a considerable number of houses in other places; our ships and vessels are seized; the necessary supplies of provisions are intercepted, and he is exerting his utmost power to spread destruction and devastation around him.
All nice and legal, nothing short of tyranny, and nothing that a junior high student shouldn't know.

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