The American history still remains one of the inspiring stories in the universe. Starting by being a colony of the Great Britain, everything was being controlled from England. It should be noted that England colonized many other countries of the world asserting their authority on everything that took place. Their main concern was the exploitation of the recourses that existed in these places. It was no different in America.
In 1770’s, the American colony was tired by the rule of the monarchy from Great Britain. This is the period when the American Revolution started. There was need to gain independence from the British rule. This was important for the American people as it was the only way to free themselves from the government that was based in a foreign country. The King was represented by a Governor. The journey to independence was not an easy one.
Different people contributed to this course. This essay will dwell on different documents that were written by different authors. These documents greatly influenced the struggle for independence. They include: Common Sense by Thomas Paine and A Proclamation of Shaysite Grievances by Daniel Gray. These documents immensely contributed to the education of the common man of their rights to independence.
Common Sense was a pamphlet written by Thomas Paine who was British and published in January, 1776. This was a period in American history known as the American Revolution. The American people had gotten tired of being subject to the Great Britain. This document entailed the reason of gaining independence from the rule of just an island country. There was no way this island could control a whole continent.
This document was written in a plane language easily understandable to the common people. It acted as catalyst to those who fought for the independence. This pamphlet starts by explaining what government and society are. It explains of a people who were taken from somewhere, taken to a place and later abandoned. These people only find joy in living together. They therefore form a society. They sit together and form there laws to govern them.
It faltered the English constitution as giving much power to the rulers. This was not right because people were biblically equal before God. This power ended up affecting the colonized as they became the subjects. The writer says that, ‘in England, a King has more to do than to make war and give away places, which in plane terms is to impoverish the nation and set it together by the ears’. He went on to attack the type of government that the monarch exercised on the subjects.
Thomas Paine also wrote of the great wealth that America had acquired. This wealth was enough to defend her against any external aggression. He went ahead to boast of the largest army in the universe that America had. All these resources were being used by the government that was foreign. There was clearly no reason for this as America could govern herself without any external help. America did not indebt anyone.
As per the document, the only solution was to gain independence. It went ahead into elaborating the kind of structure that would very well fit the independent American nation. The document first suggests the structure that forms a congress. This same structure, for the first time proposed the institution of a president elected by annually elected by the congress representatives.
The writer spent enough time in describing the ability of the America in terms of the resources. He suggested that America could build the biggest navy ship that could not be rivaled by any other. Thomas Paine wrote; ‘In almost every article of difence we abound’. He argued that by America being part of Great Britain, she was being dragged in the European wars without good reasons. This document conspicuously fuelled the American Revolution due to the timing of its authorship.
A Proclamation of Shaysite Grievances was another document that was written by Daniel Gray in 1786. This was a different period of time when the American Revolution was over. The writing of this document was prompted by the dissolutionment of the farmers. These farmers had supported the American Revolution with expectation of having a better and easy life. This was never the case as all things worked against them.
The tax cut they had expected did not materialize. Taxes were hiked than how they were before thus pushing many farmers out of the farms. Their fight was to gain independence that was to make work and life easier. This prompted them to come together and form a political committee. A protest letter was written and read out to the people. This proclamation raised a number of issues.
The first item that the proclamation featured was the high tax that was being charged to the farmers. This was unwarranted as there was no much money in circulation at this period of time. This rendered life unbearable as the people could no longer support themselves with what they had. This eventually affected the contribution to the community welfare.
This document also protested against the law that declared that anyone who spearheaded any human rights activism could easily be taken ‘to the most distant part of the commonwealth, and thereby subjected to unjust punishment’. This was a law that was put in place to scare them due to the fear of being flown anywhere. Such a situation would not guarantee them any fare trial. Furthermore, there was a protest against the much power given to the Sheriffs and other law enforcers. They were also exempted from prosecution.
This was sealed by the Riot Act. This act had exposed those that protested to the abuses by the law enforcers. This had to change. The above were the grievances that made these Americans take the arms against the government. They also wanted that the high tax was being charged to be used to settle the domestic and foreign debt. This is what was termed as the Proclamation of Shaysite Grievances.
These documents played a big role in the fight of independence in the America. The first document was written to insight the Americans who were tired of the slavery that they were subjected to by the Great Britain. The document clearly brought out the ability that they had. They therefore had no need to still suffer. They could easily fight for their independence. This document encouraged people to fight for themselves.
Just as it is well written in; The Record, Volume One by David E. this was a very significant period when America was undergoing a lot of changes that would forever change their destiny. People had to stand out to fight for their sovereignty. American soldiers were being taken to fight in defence of Great Britain.
This was something that was creating more enemies for them. During this period, different groups emerged to fight and defend their rights. This is why the farmers and former soldiers came together to protest against the high tax levied. They had no choice but to stand out against the upcoming injustices. The torture was being perpetuated by the security officers who were otherwise supposed to be the custodians of the law.
Common Sense and A Proclamation of Shaysite Grievances were however different in some aspects. Common Sense was written by an individual who had an intention of provoking the British government. This document was also secretly published and distributed to many other British colonies. It was therefore intended to be a secret weapon to aid in turning the Americans into rejecting the British autocracy.
A proclamation of Shaysite Grievances on the other hand was a protest that was well organized. A group of individuals who felt grieved came together and proclaimed their grievances. Daniel Gray, the Chairman of that political committee read out to the public the reason of their protest. They therefore declared a war against the government which had not made anything easier for them. High taxes, debts and police brutality were the main issues they had. They were to stop at nothing to achieve this end. To those who live in the present, it is kudos.
In conclusion, it is very clear that the American Revolution that led to the declaration was something that was a product of many forces. Groups came together to rise against the oppression, others wrote articles and publications that gave the Americans the insight and energy to go on with the fight. At present, everyone enjoys the fruits of these brave American patriots. They laid their lives down for the future of the American people. They stopped at nothing until they got independence.