Thomas Paine lived up to his name – at least, that is what many thought in the late 1700’s. He was an English-American political activist, author, political theorist and revolutionary. It seems our century does not have the monopoly on bold individuals who are determined to support human rights initiatives. Born in Thetford, England, Thomas Paine immigrated, with the help of Benjamin Franklin, to the British American colonies in 1774.
Thomas Paine looked toward the future when he penned the pamphlet, Common Sense, which would inspire the American patriots in 1776 to declare independence from Britain. Even in our era of immediate communication, the dissemination of the message is impressive. In three months, 100,000 (or 500,000 copies, if you included the pirated editions), were circulated throughout the American British Colonies. Thomas Paine put forward ideas on human rights that stirred a nation. His reasons for writing can be summed up in one sentence.
“If there must be trouble, let it be in my day, that my child may have peace.”