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African Americans And The American Revolution

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In their demands for liberty and equality, African Americans would point to their role in all of America’s wars. Many fought for liberty in the American Revolution, like Philadelphia’s James Forten who served aboard an American privateer. God created all men equal. Why are they not being treated equally? Blacks and whites should be protected by the same laws and privileges. James Forten was a freeborn African American who had a nice job and was very wealthy for his time. Forten says, “Whilst so much is being done in the world, to ameliorate the condition of mankind, and the spirit of Freedom is marching with rapid strides and causing tyrants to tremble, may America awake from the apathy in which she has long slumbered.” The northern states were slowly starting to abolish slavery and some the whites in Pennsylvania did not like all of the free slaves in their state still. Pennsylvania was once a refuge for free African Americans. Forten demanded to be treated the same as whites and have full citizenship. I agree that African Americans are created equally and should be protected by the same laws. The legal principles James Forten used were the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution. Those two documents are the most important in American history. Forten appealed to what God has spoken. “So God created man in his [own] image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.” (Genesis 1:27) His ideas were formed by Thomas Paine and other famous
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