Lead: In early spring 1774, the British Parliament, angered over colonial insubordination, passed a series of acts that would prove the law of unintended consequences. They would ignite a revolution.

Intro.: A Moment in Time with Dan Roberts.

Content: Just before Christmas the previous year in Boston harbor, colonial agitators, disguised as Native Americans, removed thousands of pounds of British East India Company Tea from cargo holds and threw them in the water. The Company was in debt and needed a political boost. It was able to persuade Parliament to permit the sale of tea direct to American consumers, thereby undercutting local merchants. A tiny little import tax was assigned to the tea. Thus followed the Boston Tea Party. This act of defiance sent the House of Commons into a rage and in retaliation it passed what was known in America as the Coercive or Intolerable Acts. The port of Boston was closed until restitution was paid British East India, the independent legislative  powers of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts were restricted, British officials, arrested in America, were removed from colonial jurisdiction and transported to England for trial, and colonials were required to quarter royal troops in their homes.

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