Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Revolutionary Of The Week

Thomas Paine

Born in England in 1737, Thomas Paine found a home as the resident radical in the Colonies. His writings & words inspired a nation to independence.
Paine wrote 'Common Sense', anonymously, as a pamphlet in January 1776. It stirred the spirits of colonial America by putting into words what the people seeking freedom from British rule had been feeling for a long time. Every member of Congress read it, & it sold roughly 500,000 copies. Now, for those times, that was a shitload! To perform a similar feat today, an author would have to sell more than 46 million books!!!
'Common Sense' popularized the concept that even a good goverment is, at best, a necessary evil.
Paine effectively demonized King George III, & argued against a small island nation like England ruling a continent on the other side of the ocean. Hmmmm...sound familiar??
Poor Paine was denounced as a drunken atheist, & died in poverty---but not before sparking the revolutionary flame with 'Common Sense'.

" Every age and generation must be free to act for itself, in all cases, as the ages and generations which proceded it...Man has no property in man, neither has any generation a property in the generation which are to follow."--Thomas Paine

" Young people, don't give up hope. If you participate, the future is yours."--Thomas Paine