The Most Effective Means Of Protest Essay

The Most Effective Means Of Protest Essay

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The most effective means of protesting an unjust law is to show you are willing to do whatever it takes for your belief to be understood. The most effective way to deal with civil disobedience is a topic of discussion that has traveled far in history. Socrates, Dr. King, and Malcolm X each make an argument as to what they believe to be effective means of protest. After describing the viewpoints by these three individuals it will be noted what my standpoint is. I agree with Malcolm X that any means necessary is the approach to change behavior in any opposing audience because it the only method that shows self-respect and instills your belief upon others.
Socrates believes that mere persuasion is the most effective means of protest and no action or violence is required. He defends that words and reason are able to change one’s behavior and why he/she acts. Furthermore, if you try to change a person’s thoughts and mindset, it leads to a longer lasting change because now they think a new way. When you change the mindset of someone you change their rationale on their behaviors. This will lead to effective change because the other person can understand why what they did is wrong, versus just changing their behavior. The act of persuasion, or nonviolence, educates people on the cause. People who are more educated are more likely to do just things. It plays to people’s sympathy and emotions because it shows what the issue is, with much explanation, which is more effective because people are forced to think about it. It is human nature to have tension in arguments. Persuasion is a nonviolent means of negotiation.
Direct action does not fall under Socrates’s beliefs. He argues against this behavior to solve an issue. He believes direct ac...


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... patience. King realizes that in order for persuasion to work, people must be willing to listen. People will not always be willing to listen, especially in cases like prejudice and deep-seated racism. For this reason, the oppressor is never willing to give up their beliefs and why the oppressed must take action for their freedom. King supports this by stating this from Letter from Birmingham Jail , “We know through painful experience that freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed”. From Socrates’s perspective it can be inferred that one must have infinite patience because he never states how much suffering is enough. On the contrary, King believes there is a time when enough people have suffered and abuse must end. Action should be taken nonviolently; one should not sit around and try to persuade people without action.

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