List of Pros and Cons of Articles of Confederation

The Articles of Confederation were written back in 1777, during the second anniversary of the Fourth of July, also known as Independence Day. This document was written with the purpose of preparing America to establish their own government in the absence of British rule. The document is considered to be one of the most important freedom related texts in world history, but there are advantages and disadvantages that need to be explored.

List of Pros of Articles of Confederation

1. Providing Protection Against The British.
The Articles of Confederation were written in order to protect a young nation from the cruel and harsh realities of colonial rule. It was believed that the British government had become far too tyrannical and had begun to impose taxes on their colonies, without considering the full ramifications of these decisions.

Since America had stopped agreeing with the rules that were being set by the British government, it became imperative to establish a new set of rules, a new way of doing things that was more democratic.

2. Increased Freedom To Travel and Trade.
Americans had been limited under British rule and were not permitted to travel as they wished. During the moments when America was emerging as a new nation, opportunities were limited and citizens were not able to move to new areas to find new employment.

Under British rule, citizens of young America were not able to trade with one another without severe restrictions. The Articles of Confederation granted the freedom to travel as needed and trade with fellow citizens unfettered by British rule. The only people who were excluded were known criminals.

List of Cons of Articles of Confederation

1. Central American Government Is Weakened.
After the Articles of Confederation were written, the central United States government was severely weakened and was not able to run the nation as effectively as needed. Because of the weak government, tax collection also suffered, which caused America to take mountains of debt during its infancy.

The Revolutionary War was quite costly and when the American government was not able to recoup their massive investment, this exposed the weakness of the main branches of government. American citizens were already skeptical about taxes before, so the government was unable to collect in many instances.

2. Military Program Was Severely Lacking.
As hard as it may be to believe, there was a time when America’s military might paled in comparison to the rest of the civilized world. When the Articles of Confederation were written, they did not provide a main military force to protect the nation. Instead, the Articles stated that each colony was responsible for providing its own militia, which was a clearly ineffective strategy. Without the correct military training, these undermanned militias languished.