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Main Points--Samuel Johnson, Taxation No Tyranny (1775)

Samuel Johnson
Taxation No Tyranny (1775)
Main Points:
1. Americans are able to bear taxation.
2. Every adult pays taxes:
“Of every empire all the subordinate communities are liable to taxation, because they all
share the benefits of government, and, therefore, ought to all furnish their proportion of the
“As all are born the subjects of some state or other, we may be said to have been all born
contenting to some system of government.”
“Humanity is very uniform. The Americans have this resemblance to Europeans, that they
do not always know when they are well.”
3. Americans have no proof that parliament every ceded to them exemption from obedience.
Now there are only two choices: “to allow their claim to independence or to reduce them,
by force, to submission and allegiance….”
“If the subject refuses to obey, it is the duty of authority to use compulsion. Society cannot
subsist but by the power, first of making laws, and then of enforcing them….”
4. The American rebels are hypocrites.
“If slavery be thus fatally contagious, how is it that we hear the loudest yelps for liberty
among the drivers of negroes?”