Essay On Civil Disobedience

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The act of civil disobedience involves the efforts of a group of people, large or small, partaking in a nonviolent protest in order to change something, particularly an aspect of government that the group does not agree with. These participants must “[refuse] to obey certain laws or governmental demands” in order to “[influence] legislation or government policy” by practicing different peaceful strategies such as “boycotting, picketing, and nonpayment of taxes” (Dictionary). Throughout history, acts of civil disobedience have been used to change controversial topics all over the world and have been successful in either getting the policy changed or by bringing the subject matter to the world’s attention. Because of many past examples of successful civil disobedient acts, it can be assumed that similar nonviolent protests will be victorious in today’s world.
Martin Luther King, Jr. was the head of the United States’ famous civil rights movement in which he practiced his own derivation of Gandhi’s teachings of Satyagraha, or mass civil disobedience, in the 1960s. His famous “Letter from Birmingham City Jail” directly speaks to the Alabama congressmen about their severe support for segregation while he serves jail time for participating in a civil rights demonstration. He speaks of just laws as being “a man-made code that squares with moral law or the law of God” and unjust laws as “a code that is out of harmony with the moral law…inflicted upon a minority in which that minority had no part in enacting or creating because they did not have the unhampered right to vote,” ridiculing the racism and segregation in Alabama legislature (King).
Similarly to Martin Luther King, Jr., Henry David Thoreau also wrote a letter in jail speakin...

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...women chose to peacefully refuse to obey their government, emanating the very definition of civil disobedience.
The desired result of a civil disobedience movement is political change and/or political attention. With activists like Henry Thoreau, Martin Luther King, Jr., and Mohandas Gandhi all practicing successful forms of civil disobedience, non-violent protests will work in today’s society. Just like the women in Saudi Arabia’s demonstration, today’s activists can peacefully address an issue with non-violent governmental disobedience and illuminate the issue they are trying to get resolved. As long as every single future protestor in every single future group follows the methods their civil disobedient predecessors did, any movement has the potential to be successful. Without 100% peace, their demonstrations will not be taken seriously and deemed as failures.
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