In retrospect, the American Revolutionary War was not simply an attempt at gaining political and economic independence from the United Kingdom but the symbol of independence and democratic values that would, later on, become the foundation for American society. However, the attitudes toward the idea of fighting for independence were not homogenous in the American society – a group of people who called themselves the Loyalists chose to remain loyal to the British Empire and its political choices. Even though there were economic and political considerations when the movement was supported, the primary reasons behind people’s willingness to remain, Loyalists, concerned the propensity to follow the traditions, as well as the fear of a social change and the possibility of losing moral values.
We will write a custom Coursework on Members of the American Population Remain Loyalists specifically for you
807 certified writers online
Being devoted to the cause of the British Empire and the Crown, Loyalists assumed that going against the directions set by the British government, let alone promoting the ideas of independence, was not only illegal but also immoral (Newman, 2016). The reason for Loyalists to take the identified political stance was that the British culture was an integral part of their identity: “Loyalists – Black as well as white – defined themselves, in the last resort, as British subjects” (Blackstock & O’Gorman, 2014, p. 174).
Furthermore, the fact that the opponents of Loyalists resorted to brutality and use of violence as the means of getting their point across did not help in convincing the supporters of the Crown that the cause of the rebels was worth pursuing. Indeed, historical records show that the fighters for independence often used methods that could be viewed as ethically questionable (Newman, 2016). With the controversial steps that the proponents of independence took, it was very difficult for Loyalists to accept the new ideas and support them.
It would be wrong to claim that the reasons for some Americans to remain Loyalists included only culture-related factors Apart from the attachment to the traditions and the cultural ties with the British Empire, the proponents of the Loyalist movement also had business-related connections (Schneid, 2011). Therefore, the refusal to abandon their loyalty to the British Empire among Loyalists was quite understandable. Although the motivations of Loyalists could not be condoned, they were, nevertheless, rather clear.
However, even though there were the elements of the economic-based reasoning behind the arguments of Loyalists, most of their statements were linked directly to the traditions, values, and philosophies of Great Britain. It was the fear of change and the possible need to abandon the traditions and values of Great Britain that became the driving force behind the Loyalist movement (Newman, 2016). Even though the social changes to the framework of interactions between the members of the American society were inevitable at the identified point, the transition to a new model of building relationships, establishing the principles of social and legal justice, and running the state was a rather challenging step. Accepting the ideas of the war meant refusing the long-established model of communication, which was an understandably responsible decision to make. Fearing the weight of this responsibility, the proponents of the Loyalist movement promoted the ideas of being faithful to the British empire, yet the country was on the brink of a massive social change, and the endeavors of Loyalists could not stop these changes from happening.
Blackstock, A., & O’Gorman, F. (2014,). Loyalism and the formation of the British world, 1775-1914. Woodridge, IL: Boydell & Brewer Ltd.
Newman, P. C. (2016). Hostages to fortune: The United Empire loyalists and the making of Canada. New York, NY: Simon and Schuster.
Schneid, T. D. (2011). Legal liabilities in safety and loss prevention: A practical guide (2nd ed.). Boston, MA: Jones & Bartlett.