The Pros and Cons of Civil Disobedience

The Pros and Cons of Civil Disobedience

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Civil disobedience is the refusal to obey civil laws in an effort to induce change in governmental policy or legislation, characterized by the use of passive resistance or other nonviolent means. The use of nonviolence runs throughout history however the fusion of organized mass struggle and nonviolence is relatively new.
The militant campaign for women’s suffrage in Britain included a variety of nonviolent tactics such as boycotts, noncooperation, limited property destruction, civil disobedience, mass marches and demonstrations. The Salvadoran people have used nonviolence as one powerful and necessary element of their struggle. There is rich tradition of nonviolent protest in this country as well, including Harriet Tubman’s Underground Railroad during the civil war and Henry Thoreau’s refusal to pay war taxes.
Nonviolent civil disobedience was a critical factor in gaining women the right to vote in the United States, this changed the face of the South. The Congress of Racial Equality (CORE) initiated modern nonviolent action for civil rights. I also believe that the gay and lesbian community is the action of direct nonviolent activism and when the ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to unleash Power) was formed it focused not only on AIDS but on the increase of homophobia and attack on lesbians and gays.
I believe governmental power is maintained through oppression and tactic compliance of the majority of the governed struggle and conflict are often necessary to correct injustice.
Our struggle is not easy, and we must not think of nonviolence as a safe way to fight oppression, the strength of nonviolence comes from your willingness to take personal risks in Kohlberg’s moral stage 5 moral rights and social contract is explained in this political analysis on governmental power and the antiapartheid and central America work when they led protest on campuses with hundreds being arrested and 130 campus withdrawals.
Nonviolent civil disobedience has taken place at dozens of nuclear power plants test sites, and military bases in the 70’s there was a mass of civil disobedience from New Hampshire to California. In 1982 there were over 1750 people arrested at the UN missions of the five major nuclear power plants.
Liberals of the Age hold these pieties to be self-evident it states that violence is equal and must be condemned equally; and that non-violent civil disobedience is everywhere and a more effective tactic when it comes to social and political justice. There are two hypocrisies to avoid, one is the hypocrisy of those who fetish violence as a tactic of the oppressed even where it’s ineffective and unjust then they demand support from people.

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The other is the hypocrisy of the comfortable; these are people that stand by when violence serves oppression then try to moralize when they resort to violence. Russell, Corvine. ”Against the pieties of the age.” Canadian dimension Mar-Apr.2009:2 General on file.Web.18 Aug.2010.
Nonviolence civil disobedience has been criticized for being a predictable, domesticated, and sometimes disempowering form of civic action that imposes little pressure on corporate leaders and government officials. And not only is nonviolence intrinsically virtuous, it also lends moral authority to the effectiveness of civil disobedience as a form of strategic action.
Nonviolent challenges to state power are an honored tradition in western history, and so is their repression with origins that trace back to Socrates (Athens, Katz 1985, p .915 ;)
Civil Disobedience is first and foremost, the public expression of the politics of shame; to shine light on injustice usually we have to expose those that perpetuate it. How is it possible to break the law and still be civil? The Fourth Amendment was designed to protect citizens from unlawful search and seizure it’s the principle foundation of a right of privacy in the USA. (Lessing, 1999, pp.111-21 [1].
The right to civil disobedience remains suspended between legitimacy and legality for good reasons, civil disobedience as a common crime falls under the spell of an authority’s regime”. Certainly, nonviolence is always preferable to violence, but we may have a greater difficulty in arguing that all forms of injustice and violent oppression can be dissolved nonviolently. The picture of civil disobedience raises many questions. Why must civil disobedience be violent?
Some theorist maintain that civil disobedience is an outdated, overanalyzed notion that reflects current forms of political reform the final possible view is that civil disobedience should be dealt with more leniently then ordinary offenders are. Any use of violence would seem to aggravate civil disobedience particularly when it increases the harm of the offense or when it directly incites further unjustified instances of violence.
The communicative aspects of civil disobedience could be said to aggravate such offenses since it is usually is attended by much greater publicity than most covert violations are. Examples of civil disobedience are Rosa Park’s refusal to get out of her seat and sit in the back of the bus or Gandhi’s salt march. Let’s look at some of the pros and cons:
A. In certain circumstances civil disobedience is a powerful method of making the will of the public count if it is being ignored, civil disobedience is also the only way to get attention for a cause.
B. Not every just cause can be pursued through the courts the courts are often controlled by the same political elite as the government.
C. If a certain law is oppressive it cannot be opposed in principle but obeyed in practice out of concern for legality- it must be broken.
A. In A democracy civil disobedience can’t be justified
B. Most democracies also allow appeal to the courts against laws which are obviously unjust.
C. We must obey the law even if we think it is wrong, or anarchy will result.
There are some major people that contributed greatly to the contribution of civil disobedience was Martin Luther King Jr. ( 1929-1968) he made civil disobedience the distinguishing feature of the civil rights movement.
Mahatma Ghandi( 1869-1948) he started his civil disobedience in South Africa as part of the disenfranchised Indian immagrants.
Thoreau (1817-1862) writer made the theory, put it in practice, and gave the practice a name civil disobedience.
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