Change or preserve Essay

This essay has a total of 820 words and 4 pages.

change or preserve

The American Revolution was fought to change oppressive taxation and Legislation by the
English government in order to reinstate the social political, and economic structure of
the colonies before the English oppression. The colonists were very content with their
lives until the implementation of heavy taxation and oppressive measures by the English
government as well as many English companies, such as the East India Company. After the
wars, America gained its independence, but based it's government around the welfare of the
people, using John Locke's theory of government serving the people, instead of the people
serving government.

Before the heavy taxation and the despotic English laws, the Americans had a responsible
representative government of their own. The most prominent men in a county or borough
would run for election to represent that area. However, the system was not perfect in
that newly established counties and boroughs were not allowed representatives, when so
called "ghost-towns" with only a few residents were. This problem was solved by the
theory of virtual representation, in which every representative would be a "virtual"
representative for all of the English subjects. Its Economic system was doing well, based
primarily on agriculture and overseas trade. It supported the growth of large cities
such as Boston and New York, but also increased the rate of poverty in these areas by
making the jobs of many city-dwellers dependent on good overseas markets. Its Social
structure was unlike England's in that it was not based heavily on social ranks. Having
fancy titles did not mean much in American society because it didn't afford you any
special rights, unlike England's nobles, which were allowed hereditary governmental power
in the House of Lords.

As England began trying to extract reparation funds from America after the French and
Indian war, it made many mistakes that would eventually lead to the American Revolution.
The first thing they did was to instate taxes on man common things such as Sugar, with the
Sugar Tax Act, and lead, paint, paper, glass, and tea with the Townshend Act. This would
be within reason, but the English put forth the Currency Act, which demanded that the
taxes be paid in specie, which was basically gold or silver. This was a problem because
the colonists now used fiat, or paper money to trade within their own colonies. England
also took away some of the colonists rights with the Quartering Act in 1765, which forced
colonial families to take in and board English soldiers in their own homes. England also
established the Writs of Assistance, which allowed English troops to search anywhere for
anything with a blanket warrant. Anyone found with illegal goods was to be tried in an
English admiralty court by a royal judge, with no jury. In 1774, the English government
passed The Quebec Act, also known as the Intolerable Acts, which closed the port of
Boston, imposed a British Governor elected by the Crown in Massachusetts, and gave the
French land concessions in the west. As the English became harsher towards the colonies,
the colonies felt the need to protect themselves. They set up the First Continental
Congress in Pennsylvania with the goal of getting Parliament to return to its old, relaxed
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