The Great Dangers of Civil Disobedience

Published: 2021-07-01 05:35:02
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Category: Civil Disobedience, Democracy, Walden

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Van Dudes explicitly refutes the concepts of Thoreau suggesting that they, as the title of his work suggests, destroy democracy. Van Dudes feels that when man disobeys the law and separates from the democratic society he feels has failed, he simply pushes democracy further towards failure. While the ends laid out by Thoreau in Walden and Civil Disobedience, and Martin Luther King Jar. In Letter From Birmingham Jail, may be completely valid, the mean by which they chose to try and attain them, civil disobedience, is acted upon without true understanding of its detrimental impact to democratic society according to Lewis H.
Van Dudes. While Henry David Thoreau seems to feel he is presenting the ideals for how one should live their life and how government should function, In reality he Is conveying an impractical message with detrimental effects. In his work Walden, Thoreau outlines the basic ideas of transcendentalism and keeps an account of his time spent living in the Walden woods. It is in the Walden woods that Thoreau concludes, "If we do not... Forge rails, and devote days and nights to the work, but go to tinkering upon our lives o improve them, who will build railroads?... Ho will want Thoreau Is conveying the message that within American society man has becomes so consumed with his own life that he has forgotten about striving towards progression. Thoreau feels that If every man spends his time concerned with minor detail, and the material things society has defined as symbols of success. Man will not advance, he will simply live a cyclical life during which nothing of meaning occurs. While Thoreau presents his ideas with great confidence he soon finds that man inherently can't abandon all outing and ritual, thus making his concept of transcendence impractical.
More Important than the Impracticality of transcendentalism Is Thoreau Interpretation of what he is presenting. Thoreau feels he is providing the example of a man who transcends societal constraints and living his life to the fullest. In reality Thoreau is very much avoiding society entirely by taking up this supposed transcendent lifestyle. Lewis H. Van Dudes presents the Idea that call disobedience Is very much a self- fulfilling prophecy. In going to the woods Thoreau doesn't "build railroads" but instead leaves them to be built by the world which he has lost faith in.

By leaving the building of railroads, essentially the directing of society, to a society he feels is very limited due to deeply Ingrained routine and ritual, Thoreau removes the Influence he may have potentially had. This removal of Influence doesn't lead the railroads to taking the shape Thoreau wished for but instead lets a society he already doesn't 1 OFF nave Tall n In create teen In any way teen please. When man elects to transcend, en really avoids society and does not build railroads but instead runs from them. Henry David Thoreau presents his ideas for achieving better government in his work Civil Disobedience.
As the title of his work suggests, Thoreau felt civil disobedience, a form of non-violent protest of laws, was the key to ensuring a government doesn't over extend its control over its people. In Civil Disobedience Thoreau states, "The only obligation which I have a right to assume is to do at any time what I think is right"(l). Thoreau seems to suggest that governmental laws constrain people. He feels as if man can't truly live within a society led by a government that "restricts" him by imposing laws and expecting adherence to them.
While Thoreau feels that a government that didn't impose itself upon him would best allow man to flourish, it is Thoreau very belief that he should be able to do what he feels is right that could potentially create anarchy. Van Dudes argues that to break the law is to consider oneself above the law, and if everyone feels they are above the law society can't function. If no one pays taxes or supports government society doesn't flourish instead it perishes. While an organized effort against government could potentially lead to unofficial results, when all people rebel against the laws currently in place the results are not necessarily ideal.
Simply because many people disagree with the law doesn't mean they have the same opinions on what the proper laws are. Abandonment of laws would possibly, and likely result in the development of factions and these divided factions could result in the development of a state of anarchy. While Thoreau felt he was conveying the basis for great improvement in society, should his intellectual ideas be taken to fruition the possibility of anarchy could be ever present. Martin Luther King Jar. Arguably one of the most influential Americans of all time, relied upon civil disobedience as a method of attaining his ultimate goal, the elimination of segregation. During one of his nonviolent protests King was arrested and placed in a Birmingham Jail. After being condemned by the clergymen of Birmingham King wrote his Letter From Birmingham Jail. Within this letter King attempts to Justify the need for his acts of civil disobedience. King claims there is a necessity for civil disobedience to bring about change.
King's goal was, without a doubt, Just and necessary however his methods for attaining his goal were not. In his letter King stated, "One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey Just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I would agree with SST. Augustine that 'an unjust law is no law at par 12). King takes a very similar position to Thoreau in deciding that it is man's responsibility to disobey laws he finds unjust. King is suggesting that to think a law is unjust but do nothing is Just s bad as blindly following the law in the first place.
King is convinced that only civil disobedience could bring the results he desired. While King's goal to end the segregation of African Americans and whites in America was obviously one of great importance, his methods were not as ideal. Van Dudes would argue that by insisting on disobeying laws, Martin Luther King was demanding African Americans and others to pull away from the potential answer to their problem. King was essentially giving up on the democracy that he felt oppressed him. While democracy is inherently flawed it still allows for all who patiently adhere to it can have an influence.
King doesn't patiently wait for the processes of democracy to get his point across. Instead , Klan puts enamels above democracy Ana requests toners ay ten same. Only in abandoning democracy does it truly fail, not due to its own inherent faults, but due to the assumption of failure by those who abandon it. Lewis H. Van Dudes, in his Civil Disobedience: Destroyer of Democracy, attempts to refute the beliefs of all those who favor civil disobedience. Van Dudes directly interdicts Thoreau in saying, "Thoreau position is not only morally irresponsible but politically reprehensible.
When citizens in a democracy are called on to make a profession of faith, the civil disobedient offer only a confession of failure. " Van Dudes is conveying the idea that Thoreau beliefs are unacceptable because what he feels to be an inspiring message for further progress, is simply a foreboding message of unavoidable failure. Thoreau sees civil disobedience as the expression of a higher man who is unwilling to stand for moral injustices. On the other hand, Van Dudes argues that Thoreau ideas suggest to man that he should give up on his effort to make change.
By stepping away from American democracy and society the natural born right to try and direct democracy in the ways you wish is lost. Van Dudes also contradicts the idea that man should, at any time, disregard the law when he states, "There is no man who is above the law, and there is no man who has a right to break the law. Civil disobedience is not above the law, but against the law. " Van Dudes is making it clear that are only two types of citizens, those who obey the law ND those who disobey the law. Civil disobedience is not a loophole or gray area it is simply a glorified Justification for breaking the law.
Simply because such a glorified explanation is presented doesn't mean one should latch onto it. Man within a democracy should support it in hopes of making it better, not ignore it because he doesn't approve of it in its current state. Lewis H. Van Disuse's argument brings to light the potential dangers of the seemingly Justified argument for civil disobedience. Lewis H. Van Dudes refutes both Henry David Thoreau and Martin Luther King's arguments in favor of civil disobedience. Thoreau believed in a policy of civil disobedience in trying to prevent democratic government from oppressing its people.
King felt that civil disobedience was a necessary measure in bringing an end to segregation. Van Dudes makes evident the potential dangers of both men's ideas. Van Dudes brings to the forefront the potential for political turmoil should the message of either King or Thoreau be put into practice. While King and Thoreau both feel they are presenting the method by which society can better itself, Van Dudes sakes it clear that their ideas imply people should give up on a government that doesn't comply exactly with their beliefs.

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