On May 9, 1754, Ben Franklin sketched, carved, and published the first known political cartoon in an American newspaper. It was the image of a snake cut into eight sections. The sections represented the individual colonies and the curves of the snake suggested the coastline. New England was combined into one section as the head of the snake. South Carolina was at the tail. Beneath the snake were the ominous words "Join, or Die."
The cartoon appeared along with Franklin's editorial about the "disunited state" of the colonies, and helped make his point about the importance of colonial unity. This had nothing to do with independence from Britain. It was a plea for unity in defending the colonies during the French and Indian War. It played off a common superstition of the time: a snake that had been cut into pieces could come back to life if you joined the sections together before sunset.
We here at Shop the Right believe that despite our political differences, we all must unite to fight the terrorists that are determined to destroy not just our country or standard of living, but the very lives of our families and friends. Whether you are a Republican, Democrat, member of the Far Right, Far Left, Vast Right Wing Conspiracy, or Lunatic Fringe, this design symbolizes for all of us one idea: American Unity in times of Great Peril!
We have altered Ben Franklin's original design only slightly, by cleaning it up for printing and removing the names of the 13 colonies. We removed the states names because we are firmly behind a strong, free, and United Sates of America!

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