This day is also celebrated as the International day of Non-Violence in his honor.
On Civil Disobedience is another common title. The word civil has several definitions. The one that is intended in this case is "relating to citizens and their interrelations with one another or with the state", and so civil disobedience means "disobedience to the state".
Sometimes people assume that civil in this case means "observing accepted social forms; polite" which would make civil disobedience something like polite, orderly disobedience.
Although this is an acceptable dictionary definition of the word civil, it is not what is intended here. This misinterpretation is one reason the essay is sometimes considered to be an argument for pacifism or for exclusively nonviolent resistance. The environment became especially tense after the Fugitive Slave Act of A lifelong abolitionistThoreau delivered an impassioned speech which would later become Civil Disobedience injust months after leaving Walden Pond.
The speech dealt with slavery, but at the same time excoriated American imperialismparticularly the Mexican—American War. Democracy is no cure for this, as majorities simply by virtue of being majorities do not also gain the virtues of wisdom and justice. The only obligation which I have a right to assume is to do at any time what I think right Law never made men a whit more just; and, by means of their respect for it, even the well-disposed are daily made the agents of injustice.
Because of this, it is "not too soon for honest men to rebel and revolutionize".
Such a fundamental immorality justifies any difficulty or expense to bring to an end. There are thousands who are in opinion opposed to slavery and to the war, who yet in effect do nothing to put an end to them.
He exhorts people not to just wait passively for an opportunity to vote for justice, because voting for justice is as ineffective as wishing for justice; what you need to do is to actually be just. This is not to say that you have an obligation to devote your life to fighting for justice, but you do have an obligation not to commit injustice and not to give injustice your practical support.
Paying taxes is one way in which otherwise well-meaning people collaborate in injustice.
People who proclaim that the war in Mexico is wrong and that it is wrong to enforce slavery contradict themselves if they fund both things by paying taxes. Thoreau points out that the same people who applaud soldiers for refusing to fight an unjust war are not themselves willing to refuse to fund the government that started the war.
In a constitutional republic like the United States, people often think that the proper response to an unjust law is to try to use the political process to change the law, but to obey and respect the law until it is changed.
But if the law is itself clearly unjust, and the lawmaking process is not designed to quickly obliterate such unjust laws, then Thoreau says the law deserves no respect and it should be broken. In the case of the United States, the Constitution itself enshrines the institution of slavery, and therefore falls under this condemnation.
Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also a prison Cast your whole vote, not a strip of paper merely, but your whole influence. A minority is powerless while it conforms to the majority; it is not even a minority then; but it is irresistible when it clogs by its whole weight.
If the alternative is to keep all just men in prison, or give up war and slavery, the State will not hesitate which to choose.
If a thousand men were not to pay their tax bills this year, that would not be a violent and bloody measure, as it would be to pay them, and enable the State to commit violence and shed innocent blood. This is, in fact, the definition of a peaceable revolution, if any such is possible.
It costs me less in every sense to incur the penalty of disobedience to the State than it would to obey.
I should feel as if I were worth less in that case. He considered it an interesting experience and came out of it with a new perspective on his relationship to the government and its citizens.
He was released the next day when "someone interfered, and paid that tax". As governments go, he felt, the U.
But he felt we could and should insist on better. Is a democracy, such as we know it, the last improvement possible in government? Is it not possible to take a step further towards recognizing and organizing the rights of man?
There will never be a really free and enlightened State until the State comes to recognize the individual as a higher and independent power, from which all its own power and authority are derived, and treats him accordingly. I heartily accept the motto,—"That government is best which governs least;" and I should like to see it acted up to more rapidly and systematically.The historic parish of Kinawley has essentially been in existence since the Sixth Century.
It is now divided by the damn border, its other part being in County Cavan.
Nov 23, · The more than 1, respondents are all members of the World Economic Forum’s Global Shapers Community, a network of over city-based hubs of young, civically engaged leaders aged between 20 and And these are the top 11 leaders, present and past, that inspire them the most.
On the outbreak of World War II, Patel supported Nehru's decision to withdraw the Congress from central and provincial legislatures, contrary to Gandhi's advice, as well as an initiative by senior leader Chakravarthi Rajagopalachari to offer Congress's full support to Britain if it promised Indian independence at the end of the war and installed a democratic government right away.
Sir Winston Leonard Spencer Churchill KG OM CH TD FRS PC (November 30, – January 24, ) was a British politician and statesman, best known for his leadership of the United Kingdom during World War II.
He was Prime Minister of the UK from to and again from to He received the Nobel Prize for Literature in See also: The Second World War (book series).
Biko [Donald Woods] on benjaminpohle.com *FREE* shipping on qualifying offers. Subjected to 22 hours of interrogation, torture and beating by South African police on September 6, One of his most admirable qualities was that he led by example and never preached what he himself was not willing to do.
He was charismatic, but he was also deliberate and analytical. He was a transformational and transactional leader too.
Mahatma Gandhi taught us that we can bring harmony to our world by becoming champions of love and peace for all.