Dec. 16, 1773, as protest against the British tea tax retained after the repeal of the Townshend Acts, angry colonists disguised as Native Americans boarded three tea ships and threw (a lot of expensive) tea into Boston harbor.
Was one of the most celebrated acts leading up to our declaration of independence an “act of terrorism” (under today’s standards, of course)?
I know nobody was killed during the BTP (not that I know of, anyway), but surely we can all agree that nobody need be killed for an act to be considered “terrorism.”
My dictionary says terrorism = The unlawful use or threatened use of force or violence by a person or an organized group against people or property with the intention of intimidating or coercing societies or governments, often for ideological or political reasons. (emphasis added)
Surely their goal was to coerce the British Government into repealing the overbearing tea tax.
According to the dictionary, it seems pretty clear that the BTP was an act of terrorism against the Queen (using today’s definition/application of the word “terrorism” of course).
Are we, as Americans, somewhat hypocritical (or maybe it is just ironic, I’m not sure) when we speak proudly of the Boston Tea Party? I know we don’t have a celebratory “Boston Tea Party Day” - but when I learned about it in school, it was considered a bold, brave act - standing up for what you believe in, standing up against an opressive government, etc. I mean, I didn’t learn that it was a low point in American history - when our colonists resorted to terrorism against the British. We still refer to it as a “Party” (and always did as far as I know). Did the British ever call it the “tea terrorism of 16/12”? (they do their dates backwards hehe)
I have no answer to this… I was just thinking about it and was wondering what other people thought. Just to be clear, I’m not trying to imply that we should sympathize with the terrorists who committed the horrible acts on 9/11.