Taxation Without Rep Dbq

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Alex Dib
AP History
September 24, 2012
Practice DBQ #1

Question: To what extent was the demand for no taxation without representation both the primary force motivating the American revolutionary movement and a symbol for democracy?

When the colonists came to the Americas, they did so to get away from the restrictive rule of England. Once they arrived, it took many years for them to develop a sense of self-rule, and they cherished and appreciated every moment of it. However, that was all soon to change, as the English got into wars with the French and Spanish. These three dominating European powers got into 4 major wars which would prove to be crucial for the formation of America as we know it today. With these wars, the English debt was mounting, and they didn’t have the money to balance it out. So what’s the next best thing to printing money? Taxing other people so they give you money, of course! When the English taxed the colonies through various Acts, the self-rule of the people was fading. They were doing the bidding for England, the same thing they vowed to get away from and never return to. This is where the phrase “No taxation without representation” comes into play. It would eventually turn out to be the greatest symbol for democracy, and the motivation for the American Revolution.

The French and Indian war was perhaps one of the most crucial and influential wars regarding the shaping of America. The French provoked the war, in the British point of view, by building chains of forts limiting westward expansion on the English colonies. People such as George Washington and General Edward Braddock went in with local militias to break up the French’s progress, but were forced to surrender. The Albany Plan of Union, as developed by Benjamin Franklin, was an idea that proposed the collection of taxes from the various colonies to provide an intercolonial government and a system for recruiting troops for general defense. This theory was never enacted...
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