Posted by Harry Mueller
On July 3, in recognition of the upcoming 4th of July celebration, RCFC member Henry Weisser presented a review of the American Revolution that pointed out many background aspects of the conflict and results of the conflict that put Britain in a much better light than we normally see in our history books. 
In the beginning, many acts that the colonists were reacting to (e.g., the Stamp Act) were driven by the British Parliament, not by King George, who was, after all, a constitutional monarch.  Those acts were created to have the colonies pay a fair share of the costs of the colonies' defense from incursions by the French and Indians.  A significant minority of the British Parliament wanted to confer “Dominion Status” on the colonies. 
The colonists, who initially considered themselves to be British citizens making the “revolution” a civil war, not a war between countries, were divided approximately equally between those who wanted independence, those who wanted to stay as part of the British Empire, and those who were neutral.  Many of the “United Empire Loyalists” or Tories ultimately moved to Canada.  Although fighting started in 1775, the Declaration of Independence  was not created until 1776.  The Declaration was based on the English Bill of Rights of 1689, including justification for overthrowing ambitious kings and decried taxation without representation. 
George Washington was more persistent than successful, losing more battles than he won, but hanging on until support by the French, who were in conflict with Britain over much of the world, created the opportunity for the defeat of the British at Yorktown.  Washington chose to become a limited constitutional executive, declining a crown and limiting himself to two terms, thereby cementing his position as the real hero of the revolution.  In addition, the defeat of the British led the British Parliament to confer Dominion Status, with all rights that the Americans had won, on Canada, Australia and New Zealand, when they agitated for change, rather than subjecting themselves to further wars of independence.