It began years before the colonists made their historic declaration. Britain needed money to recoup the cost of the French and Indian War in the Americas, and the head of the British Treasury, George Grenville, must have thought it was a grand idea to recoup the costs on the backs on the colonists. For 13 years after the French and Indian War, colonists endured tax after tax. The Sugar Act of 1764 and the Stamp Act of 1765 didn’t sit well with the British subjects across the ocean. Then there was always that questionable massacre in Boston back in 1770. Finally, the Tea Tax, in 1773 was the last straw, and Boston Harbor became one big ice tea pitcher.
No taxation without representation became the battle cry of a ragtag group on colonists who wanted to be free to govern themselves. But what chance did they really have against the ever-efficient and well-financed British Crown?
They had no form of national government, no professional military, no banking system and no established credit with other countries. What they did have was local, state governments and militia, a fire in their belly…and home field advantage. With no love lost for King George between France, Netherlands and Spain, those allies secretly sent weapons and supplies to the colonists. And what began as colonial disobedience turned into a global war on all fronts.
The war for American independence was fought from 1775-1783. The official Declaration of Independence came July 4, 1776; penned by Thomas Jefferson and passed by the Continental Congress of the 13 colonies. The fight for independence from monarchy rule was now official.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
In Philadelphia, the print shop of John Dunlap printed around 200 copies of the declaration and it was hand-carried to cities and towns across the 13 states to serve as both notice, and to inspire colonists to join in the fight. And fight they did.
Five years later, the Constitution of our newly formed, sovereign, independent country was adopted on September 17, 1787, by the Constitutional Convention in Philadelphia. The document, designed for We, the People, affects every citizen of the United States every day. With it, we are free to practice the religion of our choice; voice our opinion without fear of retribution; keep and bear arms; move about our country freely. It protects us from each other and…more importantly…from the government. Because our founding fathers knew firsthand how oppressive big government could be. We should keep that little piece of history in mind for the future.
Happy Birthday United States of America…from We, the People.
Submitted for Quotography