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Article on Thoreau's Act of Civil Disobedience

Project id 1002060
Subject area Self Improvement
Document type Essay
Words 2759
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Thoreau was once sent to prison for refusing to pay his taxes and that I support this event of civil disobedience as justified. Thoreau did not pay his taxes since he objected using the revenue to fund the Mexican War and police of captivity laws. He did not ask for his cash to be used for the enforcement of slavery laws, so felt he had the right to protest and act out civil disobedience. Paul Harris defines civil disobedience because "an illegal, public, nonviolent, conscientiously inspired act of protest, performed by someone who accepts the validity of the legal and political processes and who awakens to detain and punishment" (2). Before I supported his civil disobedience, I opted to see whether it was warranted. For Thoreau's arrest to be the act of civil disobedience, it has to be publicized. Being researched distinguishes his arrest because of civil disobedience rather than being criminal (7). Thoreau had lots of people offering to pay his taxes but refused to take them. His refusal left his arrest publicized enough for someone to pay his obligations to release him from prison. Civil disobedient acts need to be publicized to reveal the participant is contrary to the governmental system. Thoreau revealed he had been against paying taxes by needing to remain in jail and asserting that he should be the only person to pay his own earnings. This indicates he wanted his disobedience justified. For actions of civil disobedience to be warranted, these acts need to be acts of demonstration. Thoreau desired a shift.

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