June 17, 1776
I took a trip into the city today with Cyrus and, as could be expected, we did not leave without exchanging words with a group of Tories. Cyrus, more impassioned and contentious than I could ever be, found it fit to educate those poor ignorant gentlemen on the nuances of political theory.
The shouting didn’t start until one of our royalist companions saw fit to, in the most austere of manner, condemn the “savagery” of Colonial opposition to England’s, as they called them, “sufficiently just and deserved disciplinary actions taken to curb the obstreperous children of her colonies.” Cyrus has followed the flow of political thought through writings and resolutions far longer than I, and bespoke this knowledge in his fervid response. He started with a lesson in the importance of governmental responsibility: “The right of parliament to legislate for us cannot be accounted for upon any reasonable grounds. The constitution of Great Britain is very properly called a limited monarchy, the people having reserved to themselves a share in the legislature, as a check upon the regal authority, to prevent its degenerating into despotism and tyranny.” The right of Britain’s citizens to protect their inherent freedoms, their liberty, by partaking in their own governance should be a privilege awarded to all of His Majesty’s subjects. So, why is it, he asked, these American colonies should be left impuissant in all matters concerning the laws and acts that govern the lives and welfare of those that reside here? Cyrus’s sermon lasted well-nigh an hour before those insolent fops scuttled away to whatever dank pit they hauled themselves from.
Our excursion eventually brought us to City Hall Park, the center of yet another British attempt at pulling down the colonies’ calls for liberty. The battle that took place, the Battle of Golden Hill, over the erection of these “Liberty Poles” should have given pause to any man or woman that cherishes their freedom from a despotic regime. Golden Hill and Boston evince the iron fist with which Britain intends to beat the spirit of egalitarianism out of these colonies.
We spoke of various topics on our trip through the city; my intentions of King’s College, my father’s presence at the Congress, and our favorite writers. He revealed to me that, much to my surprise, much of his argument from earlier in the day had been comprised of another man’s words. Hamilton, he told me, a perspicacious student of my intended school had published a pamphlet entitled The Farmer Refuted in early 1775. Hamilton’s polished and imperious prose, his galvanizing disputation, is what drove Cyrus to hold him in such high approbation. The words that Cyrus spoke, that Hamilton wrote, bid me turn towards the future and wonder if all of this vociferation of liberty and freedom will ever yield any fruits, or will this American garden be forever marred by the poisons of its British begetter?