Europe, and not England, is the parent country of America. If there is any true cause of fear respecting independence, it is because no plan is yet laid down. As to religion, I hold it to be the indispensable duty of government to protect all conscientious professors thereof, and I know of no other business which government hath to do therewith. Individuals are undoubtedly safer in England than in some other countries: but the will of the king is as much the law of the land in Britain as in France, with this difference, that instead of proceeding directly from his mouth, it is handed to the people under the formidable shape of an act of parliament. It might be difficult, if not impossible, to form the Continent into one government half a century hence. And as a compensation for her debt, she has a large navy; America is without a debt, and without a navy; yet for the twentieth part of the English national debt, could have a navy as large again. It certainly hath no divinity in it.
This is supposing the present race of kings in the world to have had an honorable origin: whereas it is more than probable, that, could we take off the dark covering of antiquity and trace them to their first rise, we should find the first of them nothing better than the principal ruffian of some restless gang, whose savage manners of pre-eminence in subtilty obtained him the title of chief among plunderers; and who by increasing in power and extending his depredations, overawed the quiet and defenseless to purchase their safety by frequent contributions. Did it ensure a race of good and wise men it would have the seal of divine authority, but as it opens a door to the foolish, the wicked, and the improper, it hath in it the nature of oppression. The remains of Monarchical tyranny in the person of the King. Let the assemblies be annual, with a President only. For myself, I fully and conscientiously believe that it is the will of the Almighty that there should be a diversity of religious opinions among us.
In this time this was revolutionary thinking because the world was viewed one way. He also quoted the Bible in his writings, which helped persuade the people as most of them routinely read the Bible. This knowledge is common to all of us; We share a common language. The Reformation was preceded by the discovery of America: As if the Almighty graciously meant to open a sanctuary to the persecuted in future years, when home should afford neither friendship nor safety. A pretty business indeed for a man to be allowed eight hundred thousand sterling a year for, and worshipped into the bargain! Later scholars have assessed Common Sense's influence in several ways. Can they be so unwise as to mean that she will keep a navy in our harbors for that purpose? Aside from the printed pamphlet itself, there were many handwritten summaries and whole copies circulated. Army and to work for the Committee of Foreign Affairs before returning to Europe in 1787.
And a man hath good reason to believe that there is as much of kingcraft as priestcraft in withholding the scripture from the public in popish countries. In answering, draw upon your previous study of the events leading up to the American Revolution, and the timeline activity. The most plausible plea, which hath ever been offered in favour of hereditary succession, is, that it preserves a nation from civil wars; and were this true, it would be weighty; whereas, it is the most barefaced falsity ever imposed upon mankind. Common sense will tell us that the power which hath endeavoured to subdue us, is of all others the most improper to defend us. The document played a major part in uniting colonists before the Revolutionary War for freedom from the British. Paine wrote it as a plea for the American people to break away from Britain and to declare independence from the king.
But admitting that matters were now made up, what would be the event? It was straight forward and told Great Britain exactly the advantages of being independent from them. Our present union is marked with both these characters; we are young, and we have been distressed; but our concord hath withstood our troubles, and fixes a memorable era for posterity to glory in. Here then is the origin and rise of government; namely, a mode rendered necessary by the inability of moral virtue to govern the world; here too is the design and end of government, viz. The parliament always following the strongest side. Those men have other feelings than us who have nothing suffered.
A committee of twenty-six members of Congress, viz. The state of a king shuts him from the World, yet the business of a king requires him to know it thoroughly; wherefore the different parts, by unnaturally opposing and destroying each other, prove the whole character to be absurd and useless. In no instance hath nature made the satellite larger than its primary planet, and as England and America, with respect to each other, reverses the common order of nature, it is evident they belong to different systems: England to Europe, America to itself. If it wasn't for Thomas Paine the colonist wouldn't of got their freedom from King George the 3rd. Common Sense sold 120,000 copies within three months of its publication and 500,000 within a year.
But the most powerful of all arguments, is, that nothing but independence, i. The prejudice of Englishmen, in favor of their own government by king, lords, and commons, arises as much or more from national pride than reason. He has been here for a very long time. If you cannot do all these, then are you only deceiving yourselves, and by your delay bringing ruin upon posterity. His recommendation is for a representative democracy that gives roughly equal weight to each of the colonies. Of more worth is one honest man to society, and in the sight of God, than all the crowned ruffians that ever lived. A few able and social sailors will soon instruct a sufficient number of active landsmen in the common work of a ship.
Most wise men, in their private sentiments, have ever treated hereditary right with contempt; yet it is one of those evils, which when once established is not easily removed; many submit from fear, others from superstition, and the more powerful part shares with the king the plunder of the rest. A thousand motives will excite them thereto; the strength of one man is so unequal to his wants, and his mind so unfitted for perpetual solitude, that he is soon obliged to seek assistance and relief of another, who in his turn requires the same. But she has protected us, say some. Dearly, dearly, do we pay for the repeal of the acts, if that is all we fight for; for in a just estimation, it is as great a folly to pay a Bunker-hill price for law, as for land. In proportion to the population of the colonies at that time 2. Nay, any daring fellow, in a brig of fourteen or sixteen guns, might have robbed the whole Continent, and carried off half a million of money. Each colony would be put into a lottery; the president would be elected, by the whole congress, from the delegation of the colony that was selected in the lottery.
I draw my idea of the form of government from a principle in nature which no art can overturn, viz. That as even the best terms, which we can expect to obtain, can amount to no more than a temporary expedient, or a kind of government by guardianship, which can last no longer than till the colonies come of age, so the general face and state of things, in the interim, will be unsettled and unpromising. In point of manning a fleet, people in general run into great errors; it is not necessary that one-fourth part should be sailors. In response to the argument that America has flourished under British rule, and therefore ought to stay under the king, Paine says that such an argument fails to realize that America has evolved and no longer needs Britain's help. Absolute governments, tho' the disgrace of human nature have this advantage with them, they are simple; if the people suffer, they know the head from which their suffering springs; know likewise the remedy; and are not bewildered by a variety of causes and cures. Paine says that government's sole purpose is to protect life, liberty and property, and that a government should be judged solely on the basis of the extent to which it accomplishes this goal.
The remains of Aristocratical tyranny in the persons of the Peers. It is from our enemies that we often gain excellent maxims, and are frequently surprised into reason by their mistakes. Government, like dress, is the badge of lost innocence; the palaces of kings are built upon the ruins of the bowers of paradise. Instead, Paine argued that Americans had the right and the necessity to form their own government and determine their own future. The pamphlet was published and widely read—read by as great a proportion of the population as watches the Superbowl today.