But Great Britain has protected us, say some.
She did not protect us from our enemies on our account, but from her enemies on her own account. America would have flourished as much, and probably more, had no European power had any thing to do with governing her. France and Spain never were, nor perhaps ever will be, our enemies as Americans, but as the subjects of Great Britain. Britain is the parent country, say some; then the more shame upon her conduct. But Europe, and not England, is the parent country of America: this new world hath been the asylum for the persecuted lovers of civil and religious liberty from every part of Europe; we claim brotherhood with every European Christian, and triumph in the generosity of the sentiment. Not one third of the inhabitants, even of this province, are of English descent. The phrase of parent or mother country applied to England only, is false, selfish, narrow and ungenerous; but admitting that we were all of English descent, Britain, being now an open enemy, extinguishes every other name. Much hath been said of the united strength of Britain and the colonies, that in conjunction they might bid defiance to the world. What have we to do with setting the world at defiance? Our plan is commerce, and that, well attended to, will secure us the friendship of all Europe. I challenge the warmest advocate for reconciliation to show a single advantage that this continent can reap by being connected with Great Britain. As Europe is our market for trade, we ought to form no partial connection with any part of it. It is the true interest of America to steer clear of European
Chap. LVI.} 1776. Jan.
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