Social Contract Essay

1462 words - 6 pages

Intro to Ethics | |
|Social Contract Theory |
|Civil Disobedience |
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| ...view middle of the document...

This is where civil disobedience plays a role. Civil disobedience is sometimes necessary in order for one’s humanity to be acknowledged. Activists like Martin Luther King Jr., Mohandas K. Gandhi, and Henry David Thoreau performed civil disobedience were carefully non-violent, and were willingly to accept legal penalties. In this paper, I am going to argue that Civil Disobedience is morally justified. Social contract although it has good intentions it can never truly be accomplished until everyone has a say so in that contract.
Henry David Thoreau, a norm guy who was against war and slavery. Thoreau was sent to jail for refusing to pay his taxes in protest against the Mexican War and the extension of slavery. Thoreau said “the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation.” The quiet desperation is the regret that most people feel after they have “sold out” and sacrificed their dreams in order to be what society calls successful. Thoreau felt that individual rights must sometimes take precedence over state authority. In his essay Civil Disobedience, Thoreau evaluates the federal government vitally, contending that it is a non-natural institution created by the powerful while acknowledging that is believed to serve a purpose and is likely to remain a feature of American life. When the government supports unjust or immoral laws, Thoreau’s notion was to resistant against it. Resistance is the highest form of patriotism because it demonstrates a desire not to threaten government but to build an improved one in the long term. “If the machine of government is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law.” (On the Duty of Civil Disobedience, 1849). Thoreau’s point was not to reject government, but to resistance to those particular features deemed to be unjust or immoral. To sum up Thoreau’s point, if we are not able to tell the different between right and wrong, we will become morally numb. Civil Disobedience paved the way for other activists, as a justifiable response to unfair government policies.
Gandhi, (Mohandas Karamchand) a lawyer, whom attempted to claim his rights as a British subject, but was abused, and discovered as an Indian man, he had no rights. He concluded his true passion, moral reformer and spiritual leader which at the end lead to Indian independence. He protested that government’s treatment of immigrant workers from India. Gandhi joined the Indian National Congress, which is India’s largest political party and embraced David Thoreau’s techniques for Indian independence. He persuaded the Congress to adopt his plan of non-cooperation, a total boycott of all things British. He was arrested numerous times by the British for his activities, but he felt to was honorable to go to jail for a just cause. Gandhi developed Satyagraha which was the force contained in truth and love, or nonviolent resistance. Satyagraha promoted civil disobedience and nonviolence as the most...

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