All Rights Reserved, Famous Examples of Civil Disobedience in History. In 1960, a group of unarmed demonstrators gathered in Sharpeville, South Africa to protest a government restriction on travel for non-whites. The salt march, or satyagraha, lasted months and gained such a huge following that 60,000 people ended up in jail for their participation by the year's end. Their laws forbid Indians from selling salt independently and required that Indians pay a premium for salt that wasn't even from India. People would gather by the hundreds or thousands to hold hands, sing songs of their country, and wave old flags. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results. Some people may think that civil disobedience is a thing of the past, a kind of action limited to historical figures such as Mahatma Gandhi, Rosa Parks, or Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. In 1963, A. Phillip Randolph, Roy Wilkin, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and other civil rights leaders helped lead the March for Jobs and Freedom. Some of the most successful famous acts of civil disobedience involve well-known civil rights leaders. The definition of civil disobedience given in class was that it is a public, non-violent and conscientious breach of law that attempts to bring about a change in laws. Patriotic song festivals were held for years across these countries, and the people stood up to tanks and other attempts by the Russian government to silence their songs. Malcolm X believed in separation. The march was one factor that aided in the passing of the Civil Rights Act in 1964, which made it illegal to discriminate against black people for things like hiring, public transportation, and education. Our writers will create an original "Civil Disobedience in Todays World" essay for you. Though the protest must be held in the public eye in order to be considered a form of civil disobedience, it does not require giving law enforcements a warning in advance.Civil disobedience should be non-violent in such a way to reduce the negative effects of breaking the law. 2020 © - Big database of free essay examples for students at all levels. According to this definition, there are a few characteristics that define if an act or protest is considered to be following civil disobedience or not. Sometimes legal authorities are even notified in advance of a protest. Civil disobedience requires conscientious because the protesters are willingly breaking the law. Resources for researching Civil Disobedience and related topics of dissent, civil resistance, and activism. He thought that reacting back with the same violence would lead to even more violence, just fueling the fire. Civil Disobedience Today Some people may think that civil disobedience is a thing of the past, a kind of action limited to historical figures such as Mahatma Gandhi, Rosa Parks, or Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I think it seems very fitting with the definition of civil disobedience as well. Today, I think this mentality has continued more than changed. In 1955, Rosa Parks acted alone and almost spontaneously in taking a quiet stand against segregated bus laws in Montgomery, Alabama. Police opened fire on the group, killing and wounding nearly 200 peaceful protestors. Miller, Mark. All rights reserved. Also known as the March on Washington, the protest was in an effort to eliminate legal racial segregation in the U.S. About a quarter of a million people joined the rally for a peaceful demonstration. Civil Disobedience in the 21st Century. Usually, protesters are choosing to participate because it is a law that they believe should be amended or completely thrown out. People argued that it seemed to be vague deliberately, as to avoid describing the political experience. Anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela consequently ended his strategy of using civil disobedience to create change. Although salt production was lucrative in India, only the British were gaining from the resource. Copyright © 2020 LoveToKnow. Choosing not to pay taxes to a government participating in unjust laws was Thoreau's idea of civil disobedience. Today, China considers all talk of this incident taboo and forbids any discussion or remembrance acts. At this time, it was illegal for people to fly the old flags of their countries or show any patriotism to that heritage because they were supposed to embrace being Russian. The concept of racial profiling has went beyond what it was suppose to. This minimizes the risk of people getting hurt during the protest. After two months of protests in the square, the government sent in its military to enforce martial law and move protestors out of the area. Though some biographers opine that Gandhi learned of civil disobedience from Thoreau's classic essay, which he incorporated into his non-violent Sa… Civil disobedience has served as a major tactic of nationalist movements in former colonies in Africa and Asia prior to their gaining independence. Both were considered to be breaching the law with their protests, however the methods they used were complete opposite of one another. To him, there was a difference between segregation and separation. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. This is not true; Acts of civil disobedience are happening presently all around the world. Overall, I think that in order to see a change in todays world, a more clear sense of the word civil disobedience must be established, as well … Civil disobedience is much more than some fabled method from ancient history. To Martin Luther King, civil disobedience meant just what the definition stated at the beginning of this paper said. Depending who you ask, some may argue its ok when there is a need for change, whiles others state that we should never resort [...], A legitimate argument against Thoreau would be how does one judge if a law is unconstitutional or not to bend or break. You control your own economy; you control your own politics; you control your own society; you control you own everything. Martin Luther King agreed with the non-violent protests, however Malcolm X did not. This is not true; Acts of civil disobedience are happening presently all around the world. Civil disobedience has its set definition, but people still interpret it in whichever way they see fit. Engaging in such acts of civil disobedience entails that the person is accepting the fact that there can be legal consequences against them.Civil disobedience requires publicity in the sense that the protest takes place in a public setting, not in a secretive location. His goal was for white people and black people to live in integration with equal rights. He protested publicly, non-violently, and conscientiously, trying to bring attention to the matters he knew to be unjustified and morally unacceptable. He wanted to end racism and segregation. CC BY SA license. One Fine Day : Individual Acts of Courage and Defiance,, Windward Community College Library • 45-720, ICNC: International Center on Nonviolent Conflict. You've probably heard of at least one person who is famous for civil disobedience, but you can find numerous examples of successful acts throughout history all around the world. Martin Luther King and Malcolm X are the two thinkers I chose to compare in how each one viewed and executed civil disobedience. Thoreau never endorsed violence or breaking the law, his Civil Disobedience is a call to order to object unconstitutional laws. He based his protests off of non-violent acts to make powerful statements. The difference was how they believed it should be done. While Parks was arrested for her refusal to move, her action sparked bus boycotts that lasted over a year and resulted in a change to the bus segregation law in 1956. The line between civil disobedience can seem vague, as there are different ways to interpret the definition of it. But, when he spoke out publicly against the U.S. declaring war against Mexico, Thoreau was arrested for his overdue taxes. Civil disobedience has played an important role in history thanks to those who believe violence is not an option. Participants were pushing for reform and talks with Communist Party leaders. PHOENIX (AP) — The Latest on the immigration activists with the Abolish ICE movement and protests in Phoenix (all times local): 6:30 p.m. Four activists who chained themselves to each other outside one of the entrances to a county jail in Phoenix have been arrested in an act of civil disobedience. Martin Luther King exercised civil disobedience with peaceful and non-violent protests, while Malcolm X believed in doing whatever it takes, even if that involved violence.Martin Luther King believed violence was not the answer. Our editors will help you fix any mistakes and get an A+! Remembering these famous examples of civil disobedience can give the world hope that change is possible, but not guaranteed, through peaceful means. Parks politely refused. Thoreau used this experience to write the essay "Civil Disobedience" in 1849. In it, he suggested that if people do not cooperate with a law, that law cannot stand. When participating, you are showing support for what you believe is right. Malcolm X, on the other hand, challenged the views of Martin Luther King. However, there will always be people who feel that violence will solve problems, and it will continue to be an issue in todays world of politics.

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