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The American Revolution: Causes and Effects

The American Revolution: Causes and Effects
By: Moreno Maebelle
World War Stories- The discovery of the Americas, the two continents, was no less than the discovery of gold! This was at a time when industrialization was directed towards revenue commitment and profit. The need for new markets and lands to provide raw materials was at the apex of all interactions, especially in the case of European powers like the British and the French. This new and heady power game was responsible for the British landing on American soil and establishing thirteen colonies. And, similar to the strategies followed in the other colonies, here too they governed in the name of the crown and imposed rules, regulations and taxes - the factors that led to the American Revolution.

            The Native Americans and the early settlers, who had learned to live in harmony till the imposition of colonization, had to handle the unjust policies of British individually and together. Britain began using this new colony to explore the options for revenue. The impositions of taxes on tea, glass and paper, among a host of other daily requirements, were part of royal proclamations and steps taken to fuel the costs involved in colonial defense. There were many attempts to instigate the natives against the settlers and vice versa via serious lobbying efforts. However, with every increase in territorial expansion and taxation, the Americans sought refuge in the liberal ideals that were propounded by theories such as 'social contract'. 

The people collectively defied British intervention in daily affairs and especially taxation. As the taxes increased after every British defeat in some other colony, the Americans learned to manufacture their own glass, paper and even paint. However, America had a huge market for tea, but the land and climatic conditions did not suit the cultivation of the crop. Hence, the dependence on the British for this resource continued. Social awareness to the problem and response to the illegitimate state authority were instigated by republican ideology. The protection of liberty and civic virtue empowered the Americans to consider disobedience to unjust laws, leading to the final outburst and immediate cause of the revolution - the Boston Tea Party. 


            Ideals of republicanism that were adopted by the natives and settlers created the much required paradigm shift to fight colonialism. Writs of Assistance issued by British customs officials were challenged. The permission to whisk warehouses and ships without any cause and purely on suspicion was deliberated upon as violation of constitutional colonist rights. The Sugar Act that led to an economic downturn was hit with demonstrations and rebellious outbursts on the basis of 'no taxation without representation'. The Currency Act, Stamp Act, Townsend Acts and Quartering Act which were designed to exploit the ruled and secure British interests were systematically boycotted. 

            The agitated Americans indulged in protests and meetings. Despite the violent onslaught at the hands of the British troops, tempers remained flared. The people of the colonies soon began choosing representatives to deal with the crisis. There was no initial possibility for the unification of the leaders of the thirteen colonies, but the acts of rebellion were simultaneous throughout. After the famous Boston Tea Party, and the rather infamous shutting down of the harbor for trade, the representatives planned a congress in Philadelphia, to fight back and establish a new government. 

            Subsequently, an army was raised under the guidance of George Washington and the Declaration of Independence was signed on 4 July 1776, amidst chaos of the American Civil War in North America. The Americans proved the power of resilience and unified action. They gave the world a lesson in true democracy. The sheer determination of the Americans ousted British regime and established the United States of America as independent. The effects of the American Revolution have rippled on in time, within the character and spirit of every American, the democratic form of government adopted and leadership offered in the march against forces that refuse basic human rights to the global citizen.

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