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Zariah Chiverton post for 9/14

What’s interesting to me is how twisted the story of the American Revolution has become. When I learned about it, it seemed like everyone in the colonies was for the war and was very patriotic. The reality was, there were a lot of people who didn’t want it and wanted to better their circumstances instead of getting involved with the war. However, it was hard for them to show their opposition to it when they were legally being forced to fight. When it’s these stories and perspectives of events that are being ignored, it’s easier to push the false narrative that the Revolution was great for everyone.

I just want to take a minute to talk about William Scott. He was a great revolutionary fighter who sacrificed a lot for the war, but up until this reading, I have never heard anything about him. This just goes to show that it was class before anything else to the wealthy people in power. Scott was another white man in “power” who didn’t get the recognition he deserved despite taking part in a war to carry out the agenda of those above him. Despite this, he was just another poor citizen that fought in the war while middle-class and higher citizens just watched. Instead, we learn about George Washington, John Hancock, and Benjamin Franklin who all had money before the war, and only made their pockets bigger.

Even years ago when the phrase “We The People” was written, it didn’t actually mean the people of the United States. It excluded the most important people in the country, the slaves, indentured servants, the working-class and poor citizens, and just about every other group that was not a rich white man. Considering the racial demographic of this nation’s politicians, it pretty much means the same thing.

Everything about reading this chapter shows how there has always been such a big disconnect between the rich and the poor. Although it is has been a problem for such a long time, I really don’t think it has to be a problem, but the reason it is is to keep the classes separate. More than economically, now and even during revolutionary times, the rich and the poor lived in two different worlds. The wealthy men in power were happy to be finding success in the war while the poor citizens were the reason that was possible. Now, big companies and CEO’s are able to get richer and richer by the day, but the working-class and poor citizens that work underneath them, are hardly recognized or properly rewarded for their work. Although things don’t always have to be about class, it is very hard to escape when it is ingrained in our country’s foundations.

 

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3 Comments

  1. Sara Moushegian Sara Moushegian

    I agree that class divisions have been ingrained into our society, and it has all stemmed from our Founding Fathers. This reading makes me realizes that in America’s capitalism, the “rags to riches” idea is honestly not a realistic possibility for Americans. It is all about the hidden advantages that people have that give them success, not just hard work. If your family is rich, you can pay for better higher education, which gives you a leg up above the competition when applying to high-paying jobs. It then becomes an endless cycle of rich people staying rich.

  2. Madeline Orr Madeline Orr

    I was also surprised that many people did not want to fight against the British but they ended up getting legally forced to join the military. I have always learned that all Americans were eager to join together against the British and become their own independent nation. This shows how certain narratives are made to create a more patriotic and inspiring start to our country. When in reality, there were many internal issues and disconnects between American people that are often not talked about.

  3. Thomas Bennett Thomas Bennett

    When Zinn spoke about how the upper class after the revolution realized they could use the middle class as a buffer to prevent insurrection from the impoverished, it hit me how the same exact thing is done today. George Carlin, a comedian, once said that the middle class are there to do all the work and the poor are there to “scare the shit out of the middle class”. This system greatly benefits the upper class and while many rich people today didn’t intentionally craft the system this way, they still benefit from the system itself. The top 1% always act as though they are better than the bottom 99% when in fact a majority of them owe their wealth to those same people they look down upon and exploit.

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