Stamps of Injustice

September 24, 2010
It was outrageous! How could Parliament think they had the right to place little stamps on every piece of paper and tax us on... well, everything? It would at least be understandable if we had any say in our legislation, but even that was too much to ask from Parliament. They had been passing some laws that really none of us liked, and I was tired of all the taxes.
In fact, most people in the city of Boston were very tired of it. Something had to be done, and soon. It was as imperative as eating, breathing, living even. That particular afternoon, some of us had agreed to meet at Faneuil Hall and think about it. In 1742, Paul Faneuil had built it as a center of commerce, but with so many issues we were having, many of us used it as a meeting place.
Someone argued that it was a lot of money to pay just to put little stamps on everything, even our playing cards. Other people differed, saying that it wasn’t about cost but about principle. Since when could Britain use us for their own profit? We could all concur that this taxing was wrong, but what could we do about it? No one knew.
Amidst all of our heated chaos, commotion, and noise, a man stood up. I recognized him as the very outspoken Patrick Henry from Virginia, who had heard of our meeting and had come to attend. “Everyone!” he bellowed, his powerful voice echoing through the walls of the hall, resonating and finally coming to rest in our ears. “We have such a thing as rights! The English can be taxed with no problems because they are represented in Parliament. We are entitled to the same right! If we are not being represented, and no one is speaking for us, then we have no reason the pay Parliament even the smallest portion of our hard-earned money! Don’t buy the stamps!”
He went on like this for quite a while. His language was quite impressive, to put it mildly; he talked like few would dare to. When he finally did end, everyone cheered. However, we were still worried about any criminal charges that we could potentially receive for evading out taxes. Then again, it didn’t really matter, because Parliament was violating our rights as well. I left Faneuil Hall that evening with a renewed feeling, as fresh as newly drawn cool water.

Faneuil Hall was an important meeting place for patriots. This is where the Sugar and Stamp acts were first protested and where the doctrine of “no taxation without representation” was first adopted. Today, many city debates are still held there. It was originally intended as a center of commerce and housed shops, which it continues to do to this day. Visitors may stop and shop and reflect on all the history that this place has see.

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