Civil Disobedience

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Vadi Dodge
Dr. Bush
ENG 323
February 10, 2013

“Civil Disobedience”
Thoreau has had a large impact on American culture and society since he was alive, his writings and beliefs are very indicative of the way many people feel about the government today. He was very cynical towards the government and the belief that the government should not have more power than necessary. Thoreau believed that people should be able to make their own decisions and take ahold of their beliefs in order to live their lives unrestricted. This has come to be the thought of many Americans today, many believe that the government should have limited power and not be allowed to make decisions for its citizens. One of Thoreau’s main issues is the Mexican-American War, is he believes The U.S. is forcing its beliefs on another country and taking advantage of that country by strong-arming them. This is relevant to me because I was a solider in the U.S. army and fought in a war that many people felt the U.S. had no place being in.

Thoreau believes that everyone should go about his or her business and act how they deem appropriate free of fear of the government’s actions. However, he also believes that soldiers are essentially robots doing exactly what they are told unable to think for themselves. I find this especially relevant to me today due to my time in the U.S. Army where that is the job of the solider, to do what they are told which is how wars are won. I feel like Thoreau contradicts himself when saying that people must do what justice requires, regardless of cost. What justice requires for a nation is often times war, which Thoreau is vehemently against. Despite Thoreau’s opinion of the government he knows that it is necessary for their to be a government, because he goes on to say that the government should be obeyed in order to preserve the services we enjoy. It seems that Thoreau is like many Americans today who have their candid opinion but have no real suggestions that...
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