In his speech to the Virginia Convention, Henry sought to stir his fellow delegates to action against the British Empire. While acknowledging the patriotism of the other delegates, he argued that strong action was needed to free the colonies. He expressed the view that British land and naval might had been amassed for use against the colonies, and advocated for the formation of a militia to provide an active defense against the likelihood of an armed invasion by British forces. Henry argued that inaction was tantamount to treason, and that winning the colonies' freedom from the British Empire was a "holy" cause. He also stated that although peace is precious, it is not worth the price of "chains and slavery". Henry summarized his argument by stating that regardless of the decisions of others, he was personally committed to the principle that death was preferable to an existence under the heel of oppression.
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