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American Revolution- Revolution or Civil War? Essay

There is a lot of debate and disagreement on whether the American Revolution was an actual revolution, but rather a civil war. A revolution implies that there was a total change in government and rule of a country, and a civil war is a war that occurs in a country between groups of people from the country. There may have been a vast amount of tension between the colonies and the British, but the occurrences during the American Revolution had little to do with the changing of the government. There were many things that the colonies were expected to do and pay for.

These were called colonial grievances. The colonies were expected to pay a lot of money for tea, sugar and stamps. The money would go to the British. The area they were allowed to live and stay in was also very restricted as they were not allowed or able to move westwards. This is because the British wanted to control the colonies and this is easier to do if the people are restrained to a smaller area. The colonies also had no one voicing their opinions and needs in the British Parliament, so all the decisions concerning the colonies were made by the British. The soldiers had power over, and controlled the colonies.

The colonies began to feel anger towards the British because of their lack of rights, freedom and say in the way they were governed. Resentment grew and these made the colonies more aware and open to the idea for fighting against the British. The colonies wanted to be able to govern and rule themselves. The tension in the colonies was not enough to cause a revolution, but rather a civil war. The Boston Tea Party was when the Americans dressed up as Mohawk Indians and threw all the English tea into the harbour.

They dressed up as Indians to symbolise how they were more American than British, and as a disguise. The throwing of the tea into the sea symbolised how they were not willing to pay taxes and were not willing to be ruled and overpowered by the British. The Americans were fighting against the British because of the tension that the colonial grievances had caused. The tension would affect any group of people and therefore, it makes it a civil war rather than revolution. As the tension grew, the colonies got tired of trying to fight the government without any change occurring.

The colonies the thought that by using armed conflict, they would be able to get their point across better. They used Lexington to secretly store weapons until they would have enough to stand against the British. The British found out about the storehouse at Lexington and began to march to Lexington so that they could end the gathering of weapons because the British didn’t want the Americans to rise up against them.

The colonies were not aware of the British moving towards Lexington, so Paul Revere rode through the night on horseback to warn the colonies. The face-off between the colonies and the British increased the already intense tension, and made the Americans want to govern themselves even more than before. The Boston Massacre was a real depiction of how much tension had been building up amongst the colonies and the British. A guard was standing outside the Customs House and the colonies began throwing snowballs at him. The colonies then started throwing rocks at the guard, rather than snowballs. The British guard then called for backup and more British soldier’s arrived at the customs house. The guards then opened fire on the colonists and killed 5 people.

After all the events had occurred, people from the colonies joined up and drafted the Declaration of Independence. This document stated how they wanted to be a free country and be able to govern themselves. The declaration of Independence states that all men are created equal, but all women were not given the right to vote, and neither could slaves. Only men who owned land had the right to vote. This shows that they war the Americas were governed did not totally change, hence it is not a revolution, but rather a civil war. So even though there is a lot of debate and disagreement on whether the American Revolution was a revolution or a civil war, there are many points that show that it is not a revolution, but a civil war.


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