During a time of great tribulations, each colonist would be forced to chose a side. Their options were either to fight for their rights and freedom or stay loyal to the royal monarchy of Britain. Both sides had support from people of great power. Two men by the names of Thomas Paine and James Chalmers wrote to defend their position and influence others to do the same with pamphlets titled Common Sense and Plain Truth, respectively. After reading, re-reading and analyzing both of the documents, it is clear that each hold debatable arguments, however, when pinned against each other and set side by side, Common Sense holds more power and influence, whereas Plain Truth highlights greater intellectual and logical arguments.
In order to fully comprehend the significance of the two documents, who wrote them and when they were written must be understood to give the pamphlets character and background. The author of Common Sense, Thomas Paine, was an England-born political philosopher or revolutionary who spoke outright for American Independence. While in England, Paine suffered many hardships, both professionally and personally. It seemed that moving to America would allow Paine to start his life anew. On the other hand, James Chalmers only holds a brief history. He was born in Scotland and moved to the Americas, becoming a major planter in Maryland and one of the most avid loyalist, writing Plain Truth as his defense against American independence. Both men released their pamphlets to the public in the year 1776. One year after the battles at Lexington and Concord, which have been said to be the beginning of the American Revolution. It is clear that the two men were set out to gain support for their respective sides.
When Common Sense i...
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...ies are not fully united. They have talked about unity, however, have failed to put a plan of action into place. This disunity is brought up in Plain Truth, with the south and north having different agendas and worries, Chalmers made it sound as though unity was just an unrealistic goal. Conversely, Paine mad the argument that unity would come naturally stating, “Tis not in numbers but in unity that our great strength lies.”
We know now the result of the American Revolution and are able to see where James Chalmers went wrong in his assessment and reasoning concerning the colonies. The plain truth is that Common Sense managed to reach a broader audience, influencing the common man, and therefore managed to garner more support and attention than that of Chalmers argument. In the case of this comparison, simplicity and emotion were able to overcome logic and reasoning.
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