Why Did We Have to Fight?
In your grammar school teachings about the Revolutionary War, you were told that King George III simply wanted more money from the colonists and that the colonists were not about to pay unless they had representation. You remember it as “Taxation without Representation”.
This, like most mythologies, is only a partial truth. The real reasons for going to war with Britain were not nearly so noble.
We know that the Seven Years War with the French came at an enormous cost to the British Crown. At the time, the colonies were flourishing and their taxation was quite a bit less than the royal subjects were paying back home. So it was clear that America would have to dig deeper and start paying more for their own protection and other benefits of living under the protections of the Crown. The colonists were not really opposed to more taxes but they didn't want to pay them blindly without some say in the process. They wanted seats in Parliament.
But this is where the nasty politics come in.
Parliament in the 1750's and 1760's mostly consisted of wealthy land owners. They feared the growing democratic movement in England. They reasoned that giving even just a few seats to the Colonies would set an unwelcome precedent. How could they give representation to the Americans when common people in London still lacked proper representation? The Revolutionary War came about because the ruling class in London believed it preferable to risk war and lose a few colonies than risk losing control of the entire empire. Sound familiar? It would have been so easy to allow the government to open up and start admitting representation to the people who were doing most of the working and paying and living and dying (to steal from the James Stewart movie). Instead, they chose to hold on to their power and not allow the intrusion into their government.
Our situation is not similar, but it is not entirely different, We demand a say in how our tax dollars are spent and how we choose to live our lives through the Constitution. We battle against an entrenched legislative body consisting not of wealthy landowners, but of hive mentality progressives and do-nothing Rinos. Like the colonists, our grievances go unheard by a group that has no intention of ever letting the status quo change.
The Revolutionary War was never really about taxes; that much, at least, is clear. One popular theory among historians describes it as essentially a war waged over principles. This is where we find ourselves today.
The most discouraging part is that we have reached a point where a decision will need to be made. The acts of sedition within the California government are intolerable. We have, perhaps, one more peaceful application to make before we must relent to a more distasteful strategy. As Thomas Jefferson said in his Summary View manuscript of 1774, “The God who gave us life gave us liberty at the same time; the hand of force may destroy, but cannot disjoin them.” What he meant is that God endowed us with freedom and the means to have it, no matter what. But it will come at great sacrifice. So while gaining our liberty without force is still possible, it requires every person who professes to want liberty to do everything in their power to secure it.