Point of No Return

1 January 2018

However, eventually the colonies and Great Britain reached a standoff, a point of no return that forever created an icy, tense relationship between the two. A point of no return is crucial to any relationship because it is the point in time where no matter what, the past cannot be made up for. The mistakes either side made will cost them, and the relationship will never be the same again.

For Britain and her colonies, the point of no return was The Coercive Acts issued in 1774.The point of no return in colonial-British relations between 1760 and 1 776 was the Coercive Acts or as many colonists knew it, the “Intolerable Acts”. As the title “Intolerable Acts” suggest the colonists thought this law was unbearable because of the four major points it stated. The first of the four important acts was the Boston Port Bill enacted on April 1st, 1774. This declared that the British Navy shut down Boston harbor unless the town agreed to reimburse Great Britain for the tea that was ruined during the Boston Tea party.The second Coercive Act was the Governmental Act which restructured the government to make it less democratic. This was done by having the Massachusetts’ upper house appointed by the crown; governor had total control over judges and sheriffs, and lastly it restricted communities to only one town meeting a year.

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The second to last Coercive Act was the Administration of Justice Act stating that any British soldier accused of murder in Massachusetts would go to trial in England or another colony.The last “Intolerable” Act was the New Quartering Act constituting that Boston soldiers can stay in private owned homes, and that they must be provided for while staying in a residents home. The last two Coercive Acts were viewed as Britain trying to impose military despotism on the colonies. I believe that these Acts were the point of no return in the colonial-British relationship because it pushed colonists to the brink of revolt; additionally colonists cleared that the revoking of these laws was their nonnegotiable, most important demand.Furthermore, in the Declaration of Independence, later created by the Founding Fathers in 1776, six of the twenty-seven reasons for justifying a schism with Britain had to do with the Intolerable Acts. Another reason why the Intolerable Acts were the point of no return is due to the difference in the importance of the events before and after these acts were passed. Before April 1st, 1774, the significant events in the relationship between Britain and her property was the Writs Of Assistance (1760), Sugar Act (1764), stamp Act (1 765), Quarter-MGM Act (1766), Townsend Act (1767), and the Tea Act (1773).

Most of these events were met with written, non violent, complaints such as Patrick Henrys letter of protest, the statement of “No Taxation without Representation”, John Dickinson “Letters from a Farmer in Pennsylvania”, Samuel Adams goal of a Committee of Correspondence, or the Boston Tea Party (where no one was injured or killed). However, after the Coercive Acts, events like the First Continental Congress were far different than the events before the “Intolerable Acts. For example, the First Continental Congress on September 5th, 1774 inPhiladelphia led to defensive measures being taken, and the colonies were officially going under “passive rebellion”. In addition, fighting began at Lexington and Concord shortly after the Coercive Acts as many British and Minutemen (local colonial militia) were killed. Lastly, the Declaration of Independence set the foundation for the freedom of our nation. Because of the fact that before the “Intolerable Acts” most problems were met with written pacifist complaints and after, war was being prepared for or carried out, shows me that the “Intolerable Acts” were the point of no return.The place in time where the past can never be forgotten, or the point of no return, is equivalent to the declaring of the Coercive Acts when it comes to colonial-British relations.

These Coercive Acts pushed the colonists to the edge of an uprising against their British mother, and eventually helped push them over the edge and lead to war. This can be proven by the disparity of violence in response to acts before and after the “Intolerable Acts”, by the colonists stating that the repeal of these acts was nonnegotiable, and the importance of these acts stated in the Declaration of Independence.

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Point of No Return. (2018, Jan 31). Retrieved March 19, 2019, from https://newyorkessays.com/essay-point-of-no-return/
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