Note: this article appeared as part of the colonial-themed April Fools site, purporting to date to April 1, 1776, from the perspective of a well-connected Virginia revolutionary pamphleteer.
On this, the First Day of April 1776, it is clear that we, the honorable men of Virginia and the other American Colonies, must accept that war for REVOLUTION and INDEPENDENCE is now inevitable. Fighting continues in the northern Colonies between Britain’s once-loyal American subjects under command of General George Washington, and those red-coated soldiers once sworn to their protection but now in enmity against them. The passage of the Prohibitory Act of 1775, news of which arrived on the continent now less than two months ago, finally renders reconciliation utterly impossible.
In this act of high despotism, the Kingdom of Great Britain, under tyrant George III and a sycophantic Parliament unanswerable to the people of these Colonies, has declared war against her own subjects. She has instituted a naval blockade against them, and declares their ships to be enemy vessels. Further, it has come to our attention through reliable correspondence that George III has now enlisted Hessian mercenaries against the Colonies in this struggle. ‘Tis an unforgivable outrage, rendering any just ties to these Colonies duly dissolved.
We shall now proceed to the inevitable conclusion of these affairs: a true DECLARATION that we, the united Colonies—no, States!—of America, by right of natural law and liberty, shall now be FREE and INDEPENDENT. We shall no longer answer to the distant authority of an enemy despot and unrepresentative Parliament.
We mustn’t delay any longer in hopes of a reconciliation which shan’t occur. The Virginia Burgesses must authorize her delegates to the CONTINENTAL CONGRESS to petition for the drafting of a formal declaration, to be completed before midsummer, expressing the causes that compel us to separation, and lending support thereto on the bases of natural law and Divine providence. I shall promptly call upon the men of the House of Burgesses, and upon my esteemed colleague the Hon. Patrick Henry, who stands now for election to Governorship of my beloved Virginia, to lend their inestimable support to these efforts.