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  • Compare the Declaration of the Stamp Act Congress with the Declaration of Independence. How has the colonists’ understanding of their relationship with the crown changed during the 10 years between 1765 and 1776? How did they define themselves? Where did they see their rights coming from? Why was that shift necessary, politically or socially?
  • Compare this with Common Sense. Do you note similarities, or differences in their logic? Does one do something the other doesn’t?
  • Compare this with Common Sense. Do you note similarities, or differences in their logic? Does one do something the other doesn’t?
  • For class

    1. 6. Stamp Act (1765)
    2. 7. Failure of Tax Policies
    3. 9. Thomas Paine, Common Sense (January 1776) <ul><li>I challenge the warmest advocate for reconciliation to show a single advantage that this continent can reap by being connected with Great Britain… renounce the alliance: because, any submission to, or dependence on, Great Britain, tends directly to involve this Continent in European wars and quarrels, and set us at variance with nations who would otherwise seek our friendship… </li></ul><ul><li>Even the distance at which the Almighty hath placed England and America is a strong and natural proof that the authority of the one over the other was never the design of Heaven. </li></ul><ul><li>Small islands not capable of protecting themselves, are the proper objects for kingdoms to take under their care; but there is something very absurd, in supposing a continent to be perpetually governed by an island. In no instance hath nature made the satellite larger than its primary planet, and as England and America, with respect to each other, reverses the common order of nature, it is evident they belong to different systems: England to Europe, America to itself. </li></ul><ul><li>For as in absolute governments the King is law, so in free countries the law ought to be King; … let the crown … be demolished… A government of our own is our natural right: And when a man seriously reflects on the precariousness of human affairs, he will become convinced, that it is infinitely wiser and safer, to form a constitution of our own in a cool deliberate manner, while we have it in our power, than to trust such an interesting event to time and chance. </li></ul>
    4. 10. <ul><li>1st. That His Majesty's subjects in these colonies owe the same allegiance to the crown of Great Britain that is owing from his subjects born within the realm… </li></ul><ul><li>2d. That His Majesty's liege subjects in these colonies are entitled to all the inherent rights and privileges of his natural born subjects within the kingdom of Great Britain . </li></ul><ul><li>3d. That it is inseparably essential to the freedom of a people, and the undoubted rights of Englishmen , that no taxes should be imposed on them, but with their own consent, given personally, or by their representatives. </li></ul><ul><li>5th. That the only representatives of the people of these colonies are persons chosen therein, by themselves; and that no taxes ever have been or can be constitutionally imposed on them but by their respective legislatures. </li></ul><ul><li>7th. That trial by jury is the inherent and invaluable right of every British subject in these colonies. </li></ul><ul><li>12th. That the increase, prosperity, and happiness of these colonies depend on the full and free enjoyment of their rights and liberties, and an intercourse, with Great Britain , mutually affectionate and advantageous. </li></ul><ul><li>13th. That it is the right of the British subjects in these colonies to petition the king or either house of Parliament. </li></ul>Declaration of the Stamp Act Congress (October 1765)
    5. 11. Declaration of Independence (July 4, 1776) When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation. 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. — That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, — That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security. — 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. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
    6. 12. (continued) <ul><ul><li>He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.… </li></ul></ul><ul><li>In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince, whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people. </li></ul><ul><li>Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity. We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends… </li></ul>

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