In the American Revolution, why was self-government seen as better than colonial rule?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

For the most part, self- government was seen as more desirable than Colonial rule because of autonomy.  After the French and Indian War, it became evident to the colonists that they were able to handle their own affairs.  The colonists understood that they were not a disorderly group of chaotic renegades who could not adhere to the rules of a political and social setting.  Rather, the colonists understood that their presence had emerged in a new realm where they demonstrated their sense of control and autonomy:

Being left alone became an indispensable component of the colonists' sense of well-being.  By the middle of the eighteenth century they had grown too accustomed, too strong, and too self-confident to submit to any other kind of handling.

This preservation of freedom is why self- rule became preferred by many colonists over colonial rule.  The increasing number of entanglements that the British were forcing on the colonists associated colonial rule with intrusion.  The Proclamation of 1763 as well as other various acts of control and taxation helped to foster the idea in the colonies that self- rule was preferable to submitting to colonial rule.  At the very least, self- rule validated Americans' voice in all of its forms, such as economic, political, and social.  Colonial rule negated these forms of voice.  Because of this, self- rule was seen as a more desirable option than colonial rule.