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karmachameleon
10-15-2007, 02:32 AM
Just posting an essay that's due tomorrow. Any comments/peer editing are welcomed.

Reasons for Independence
by Jack Johnson

By the time the Second Continental Congress had formed in the soon-to-be former colonies, the Revolutionary War had already started. Support for independence had never been higher. While Loyalists saw little to no reason for separating from Britain, the biggest rationale for independence was the way the Continental Congress had shown stability in governing over the colonies during the war, and the way the colonists came together as one entity to fight for their ideological freedom.

By 1775, the colonists had iterated their "no taxation without representation" spiel several times over, without much attention coming back from Britain. They had demonstrated their frustration through the Boston Tea Party, and several other acts of rebellion. Britain was not helping the colonists' train of thought, by drafting acts such as the Tea Act and the Declaratory Act, the latter of which was basically telling the colonies Britain would have the final word regarding laws, tariffs, etc. Especially after fighting a war for England, all the colonists requested was equal treatment as compared to an average British citizen. They formed the First Continental Congress as a means of response to the Coercive Acts, with independence being nothing more than a slight undertone of the meeting.

When the Second Continental Congress was formed, as stated before, the American Revolution had started. While independence had only been an afterthought in the First Continental Congress, in the second one it was a major and popular idea. It was heavily endorsed by eloquent writers and speakers such as Patrick Henry, Thomas Jefferson, and Samuel Adams. One of the reasons why so many people wanted independence from England was because of the growing unities in the colonies. After boycotting British goods, having a lot of ports closed, being banned from trading with the rest of the world, and being forced to quarter British soldiers, the American population felt that it had something in common with one another: hate for Britain.

But probably the biggest reason that Americans wanted and gained independence lies in the way the Second Continental Congress handled the several dilemmas going on at the time. British rule had almost vanished in the colonies, so it had a great task at hand. It showed great command in its leadership role, by electing George Washington, a capable military officer, as its general for the Continental Army. By showing the public that it could somewhat stabilize the current situation, the populace felt like it was a whole new country. After agreeing to declare independence on July 2, 1776, the blueprints of one of the greatest countries was laid out.

While many people back then felt that separating from Britain wasn't necessary, the Second Continental Congress showed why it was necessary. By leading the colonies through the war and stabilizing the current situation at hand, the average person felt united with everyone else, and was compelled to support the growing revolution.