Saturday, December 15, 2007

Great things come by change: part 2

Ben Franklin considered himself not only a Philadelphia native, he considered Britain to be his home. He spent 15 years as a diplomat between the colonies and the mother country of England.

He saw himself as loyal to both America and Britain, and he saw America as an equal part of Britain. And, in no way shape or form would he ever consider his beloved America separating from his beloved Britain.

He spent these 15 years in Britain almost as often as he was in Philadelphia, doing his part in maintaining good relations between the two. In fact, when the Stamp Tax was enacted, he stood before the British Parliament and convinced them to end the tax. And, because of Franklin, the tax was ended.

But, because of his friendly ties with Britain, many Americans believed Franklin was one of the reasons the Stamp tax was passed in the first place. And, because word traveled slowly in those days, they didn’t know he had worked so hard to end the tax. So, many Americans grew to hate the man they once dearly loved.

Now Franklin had to show that he truly was an American first, however, he still was adamantly opposed to any idea of a Revolution.

In 1774, he went before Parliament in a friendly gesture to ease tensions between the British and Americans. There, in a Privy Council, he was ridiculed and humiliated for his opinions.

As a result of this he left Britain and joined the Revolutionary cause he was once so adamantly opposed to. And, while many historians give George Washington credit for winning the revolutionary war, it real credit should be given to Franklin.

While the war was raging, Franklin spent years in France trying to convince the French to help the American colonists. Franklin knew the French hated the British, and used this to his advantage.

Once the French soldiers joined the colonists, the war was soon over.

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