The impoverished, the disenfranchised, and the “filth” (Washington’s words not ours), fought for and won all the lofty freedoms conceived of in town halls, alehouses, and eventually Philadelphia. That didn’t just happen at random, either. That’s exactly how America’s wealthier colonists planned it.
When the war became reality, there was a remarkable dearth of ardent patriots willing to stop a musket ball for “liberty.” Overwhelmingly, colonists of any means whatsoever paid drifters and vagabonds to take their place in the fight against the British. Or, if they had them available, a wealthy colonist might order a slave or servant to join the army. Is there anything nobler than risking the life of another for your ideals? Apparently not, since it wasn’t just the powdered wig wearers who bought the military service of the poor. Middle and lower-class colonists alike often pooled their monies together to hire a “down and outer” for three years’ service. When all else failed, colonies (especially the southern ones) released convicts and enrolled them in the army.”