Martin Luther King and Civil Disobedience

Topics: Law, Civil disobedience, Letter from Birmingham Jail Pages: 2 (391 words) Published: February 2, 2012
In Letter from Birmingham Jail, King invites Americans everywhere to fight injustice. He declares that all are obligated to work for justice, even above the law. Justice should be protected by politics in order for all people to enjoy certain basic rights.

King stresses the urgency of immediate and ongoing action. His encourages active persistence on the part of everyone who believes in the fight for equality. King addresses the "myth of time" that is used to belittle his efforts. He knows that time alone will not achieve equality in our society.
Reasons for disobeying laws:
King lists numerous reasons to not obey an unjust law. They each speak to his conviction regarding the importance of complete equality between all people. In order to achieve a just society, people must take an active role in disobeying unjust laws. King declares that "an unjust law is no law at all." This demonstrates King's belief that law is meant to serve the people, and all people equally. Society exists to develop and promote the overall betterment of people, and we must cultivate that. He writes of the interrelation between all communities and states (King 290). King is inspired to act for justice by his belief that "whatever affects one directly affects all indirectly (King 290)." His ideas about inclusion justify his reasoning for civil disobedience.

King appeals to people's emotions when he invokes the image of his disappointed daughter that is not allowed to visit a whites only amusement park (King 293). He relates experiences of any person in a society like America when he writes of his family and witnessing the trials that they face individually and together. His evocation of such an idea of his young children facing racism is perhaps the most convincing reason to disobey an unjust law.

How to disobey:
King has immensely strong convictions regarding utter racial equality in America. To achieve this, he employs a nonviolent campaign that includes...
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