Patriot notions

The origin and essence of the conflict between England and the colony
The colonists in America wanted to establish their own democracy, as they believed it was what God wanted, but England didn’t want then to have that much power.

Boston Tea Party of 1773
The Boston Tea Party was a political and mercantile protest by the Sons of Liberty in Boston, Massachusetts, on December 16, 1773. The target was the Tea Act of May 10, 1773, which allowed the British East India company to sell tea from China in American colonies without paying taxes apart from those imposed by the Townshend Acts. American Patriots strongly opposed the taxes in the Townshend Act as a violation of their rights. Demonstrators, some disguised as Native Americans, destroyed an entire shipment of tea sent by the East India Company. They boarded the ships and threw the chests of tea into the Boston Harbor. The British government responded harshly and the episode escalated into the American Revolution.

Declaration of Independence July 4, 1776
The United States Declaration of Independence is the statement adopted by the Second Continental Congress meeting at the Pennsylvania State House (now known as Independence Hall) in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, on July 4, 1776. The Declaration announced that the Thirteen Colonies at war with the Kingdom of Great Britain would regard themselves as thirteen independent sovereign states, no longer under British rule. With the Declaration, these new states took a collective first step toward forming the United States of America. Thomas Jefferson was the one who wrote the original draft of the document.

Revolutionary War 1775-1783, reasons, outcome
Reasons
The American Revolutionary War (1775–1783), also known as the American War of Independence, was an 18th-century war between Great Britain and its Thirteen Colonies (allied with France) which declared independence as the United States of America. Parliament passed the Stamp Act in 1765 to pay for British military troops stationed in the American colonies after the French and Indian War. Parliament had previously passed legislation to regulate trade, but the Stamp Act introduced a new principle of a direct internal tax. Americans began to question the extent of the British Parliament’s power in America, and the colonial legislatures argued that they had exclusive right to impose taxes within their jurisdictions. The seizure of the sloop Liberty in 1768 on suspicions of smuggling triggered a riot. In response, British troops occupied Boston, and Parliament threatened to extradite colonists to face trial in England. Tensions rose after the murder of Christopher Seider by a customs official in 1770 and escalated into outrage after British troops fired on civilians in the Boston Massacre. In 1772, colonists in Rhode Island boarded and burned a customs schooner. Parliament then repealed all taxes except the one on tea, passing the Tea Act in 1773, attempting to force colonists to buy East India Company tea on which the Townshend duties were paid, thus implicitly agreeing to Parliamentary supremacy. The landing of the tea was resisted in all colonies, but the governor of Massachusetts permitted British tea ships to remain in Boston Harbor, so the Sons of Liberty destroyed the tea chests in what became known as the “Boston Tea Party”. The colonists responded by establishing the Massachusetts Provincial Congress, effectively removing Crown control of the colony outside Boston. Meanwhile, representatives from twelve colonies convened the First Continental Congress to respond to the crisis. The Congress narrowly rejected a proposal to create an American parliament to act in concert with the British Parliament; instead, they passed a compact declaring a trade boycott against Britain. The boycott was effective, as imports from Britain dropped by 97% in 1775 compared to 1774.
Outcomes
– Peace of Paris
– British recognition of American independence
– End of the First British Empire
– British retention of Canada and Gibraltar
– Britain and America both fell into National Debt
– During the war America relied on loans from France, Spain and the Netherlands. So to remedy this the congress decided to print vast amounts of paper money, but the effect of that was disastrous; inflation skyrocketed, and the paper money became virtually worthless.

Articles of Confederation of 1781
The Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union was an agreement among the 13 original states of the United States of America that served as its first constitution. It was approved, after much debate (between July 1776 and November 1777), by the Second Continental Congress on November 15, 1777, and sent to the states for ratification. The Articles of Confederation came into force on March 1, 1781, after being ratified by all 13 states. A guiding principle of the Articles was to preserve the independence and sovereignty of the states. The weak central government established by the Articles received only those powers which the former colonies had recognized as belonging to king and parliament.

Constitutional Convention of 1787
The Constitutional Convention took place from May 25 to September 17, 1787, in the old Pennsylvania State House (later known as Independence Hall) in Philadelphia. Although the Convention was intended to revise the league of states and first system of government under the Articles of Confederation, the intention from the outset of many of its proponents was to create a new government rather than fix the existing one. The delegates elected George Washington of Virginia to preside over the Convention. The result of the Convention was the creation of the Constitution of the United States.

US Constitution and the Bill of Rights
The first 10 amendments to the Constitution make up the Bill of Rights. James Madison wrote the amendments, which list specific prohibitions on governmental power, in response to calls from several states for greater constitutional protection for individual liberties. The Bill of Rights was strongly influenced by the Virginia Declaration of Rights, written by George Mason. Other precursors include English documents such as the Magna Carta, the Petition of Right, the English Bill of Rights, and the Massachusetts Body of Liberties. Created – September 25, 1789, Ratified – December 15, 1791. George Washington had fourteen handwritten copies of the Bill of Rights made, one for Congress and one for each of the original thirteen states. The copy retained by the First Congress has been on display in the National Archives Building in Washington, D.C. since December 13, 1952.

The role of George Washington
He was an American political leader, military general, statesman, and Founding Father who also served as the first president of the United States from 1789 to 1797. He led Patriot forces to victory in the nation’s War of Independence, and he presided at the Constitutional Convention of 1787 which established the new federal government. He has been called the “Father of His Country” for his manifold leadership in the formative days of the new nation. Washington played a key role in the adoption and ratification of the Constitution and was then elected president by the Electoral College in the first two elections. He implemented a strong, well-financed national government while remaining impartial in a fierce rivalry between cabinet members Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton. He set enduring precedents for the office of president, including the title “President of the United States”, and his Farewell Address is widely regarded as a pre-eminent statement on republicanism.

The role of Thomas Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson was an American statesman, diplomat, lawyer, architect, and Founding Father who served as the third president of the United States from 1801 to 1809. Previously, he had served as the second vice president of the United States from 1797 to 1801. The principal author of the Declaration of Independence, Jefferson was a proponent of democracy, republicanism, and individual rights, motivating American colonists to break from the Kingdom of Great Britain and form a new nation; he produced formative documents and decisions at both the state and national level. During the American Revolution, he represented Virginia in the Continental Congress that adopted the Declaration, drafted the law for religious freedom as a Virginia legislator, and served as the second Governor of Virginia from 1779 to 1781, during the American Revolutionary War. He became the nation’s first secretary of state under President George Washington. Jefferson and James Madison (later the fourth president of the US) organized the Democratic-Republican Party to oppose the Federalist Party during the formation of the First Party System. With Madison, he anonymously wrote the controversial Kentucky and Virginia Resolutions in 1798 and 1799, which sought to strengthen states’ rights by nullifying the federal Alien and Sedition Acts.

Visual portrayal

What you might not know about the Declaration of Independence

The visual I chose for the movie of “Patriot” and this topic of independence, is a video talking about some things that all people might not know about the Declaration of Independence. I chose this because I am sure most people have a very general knowledge of the Declaration of Independence like me, but this video touches on a few facts that people might not know about it. The Declaration of Independence is a very widely known document all around the world and rightly so, because it is one of the many, if not the most important document in American history. Also, for many countries around the world it was an inspiration, to follow America’s footsteps and try, and fight for their on independence.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKJMWHCUoiw

Critical response

The movie “The Patriot” takes place in 1776, in South Carolina. The movie follows the life of Benjamin Martin, a veteran from the French and Indian War, who is haunted by his brutal past and wants nothing else, than to live peacefully with his family in his plantation. But he soon needs to abandon his pacifist nature, after an incident takes place, where his second oldest son is killed by a British colonel. That incident was a start for the events, which made him the colonel to the local colonial militia and later led them to win the American Revolutionary War and declare themselves independent. “Strictly amateur night concerning the basic storyline, which does not thoughtfully examine the battle of the Colonies, circa the late-18th century, but lays out a threadbare revenge plotline that is as misguided in its ideas as it is in its lackluster delivery of them,” (Putman, 2000, 1st link). “The Patriot” very obviously is not the favorite movie of this person and they have a lot to say about the movie. All throughout the movie this person criticizes “The Patriot” quite a lot and does not have much nice to say about it, but I personally do not agree a hundred percent with this opinion. Ofcourse, my opinions are coming from a person who has very little knowledge about that era and the historical accuracy of the film, but if a movie has a good storyline, then I am going to watch it and not complain much. I do agree with some of the points the author brings up, but mostly it seems to me the author is being too critical. Overall it seems to me the author has more problems with the characters, rather than the historical accuracy.   “It basically wants to be a summer action movie, with a historical gloss. At that, it succeeds … None of it has much to do with the historical reality of the Revolutionary War, but with such an enormous budget at risk, how could it?” (Ebert, 2000, 2nd link). This review also brings out the many flaws the author finds in the movie, but it also seemed to me that in this review at least, the author also brings out a few things they liked about it. As I mentioned before, I do not have much knowledge about this era, but I feel like this quote is quite accurate, in saying the movie was not meant to be historically correct, but rather entertaining, and that it was. In summary, from these reviews I can definitely tell people who are more familiar with this topic can tell the movie was not the most accurate, but good enough a movie to just watch. There is more emphasis put on the characters, rather than the time period and events that took place, but it really does not bother me as much as the people, who wrote the reviews. I find the movie just fit for me, with enough character development, but at the same time still a war movie.

References:

  1. http://www.all-reviews.com/videos/patriot-2.htm
  2. https://www.rogerebert.com/reviews/the-patriot-2000

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