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Confronting InjusticeMoral History and Political Theory$
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David Lyons

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199662555

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2013

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199662555.001.0001

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(p.1) Introduction
Confronting Injustice

David Lyons

Oxford University Press

Americans think of the North American colonies’ War for Independence from Great Britain as a struggle for freedom by a people subjected to colonial domination. Without denying the colonies’ grievances, this paper argues that the principal victims of injustice in North America were not European Americans but Americans of color. The freedom to exterminate Indians and take their land was one of the main objectives of the colonists’ drive for independence. The British government for its own reasons sought to slow down the colonies’ westward expansion. With territorial expansion would come the spread of slavery. Such effects were intended and accomplished and had been reasonably predictable at the time. It follows that one must question whether the War for Independence was morally justifiable.

Keywords:   American Revolution, Native Americans, African Americans, colonial domination, territorial expansion, the spread of slavery

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