Database: Academic Search Premier
First Edition Published in January, 1776
THOUGHTS ON THE PRESENT STATE OF AMERICAN AFFAIRS
IN the following pages I offer nothing more than simple facts, plain
arguments, and common sense: and have no other preliminaries to
settle with the reader, than that he will divest himself of
prejudice and prepossession, and suffer his reason and his feelings
to determine for themselves that he will put on, or rather that he
will not put off, the true character of a man, and generously
enlarge his views beyond the present day.
Volumes have been written on the subject of the struggle between
England and America. Men of all ranks have embarked in the
controversy, from different motives, and with various designs; but
all have been ineffectual, and the period of debate is closed. Arms
as the last resource decide the contest; the appeal was the choice
of the King, and the Continent has accepted the challenge. . . .
The Sun never shined on a cause of greater worth. 'Tis not the
affair of a City, a County, a Province, or a Kingdom; but of a
Continent -- of at least one-eighth part of the habitable Globe.
'Tis not the concern of a day, a year, or an age; posterity are
virtually involved in the contest, and will be more or less affected
even to the end of time, by the proceedings now. Now is the
seed-time of Continental union, faith and honour. The least fracture
now will be like a name engraved with the point of a pin on the
tender rind of a young oak; the wound would enlarge with the tree,
and posterity read in it full grown characters.
By referring the matter from argument to arms, a new era for
politics is struck -- a new method of thinking hath arisen. All
plans, proposals, &c. prior to the nineteenth of April, i.e. to the
commencement of hostilities, are like the almanacks of the last
year; which tho' proper then, are superceded and useless now.
Whatever was advanced by the advocates on either side of the
question then, terminated in one and the same point, viz a union
with Great Britain; the only difference between the parties was the
method of effecting it; the one proposing force, the other
friendship; but it hath so far happened that the first hath failed,
and the second hath withdrawn her influence.