Civil Disobedience Questions and Answers
by Henry David Thoreau

Civil Disobedience book cover
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Can you see the tradition of "Civil Disobedience" continuing now in our current socio-political environment? Cite examples from current events and the news.

The tradition of "Civil Disobedience" is continuing now in such act as groups protesting and disobeying coronavirus social distancing laws, businesses refusing to serve gay couples, and environmentalists trespassing on oil pipeline territory. Thoreau defended his own disobedience in not paying taxes by arguing that citizens have a moral right to stand up against unjust laws.

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Thoreau wrote in "Civil Disobedience" that citizens have both a moral right and a moral duty to follow their own consciences and refuse to obey unjust laws. Governments are man made, he said, and can be flawed. Therefore, citizens should be free to point out a government's ethical blind spots and place their own morality above the law.

Thoreau referred specifically to his own refusal to pay taxes, which he believed...

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