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Civil Disobedience - Change

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Civil disobedience can take many forms. These defiant acts are instituted for many different reasons, but one thing is ultimately wanted, change. If you defy the social norms and protest, you want something changed. When bringing about change, there are two ways to achieve it. You can either peacefully and nonviolently campaign for it, or you can create it by foregoing nonviolence and acting on barbaric ideals and radical ideas. Protests can be viewed as successful in many ways, but protests should follow certain guidelines to be a safe one.

A “successful” protest is viewed differently by different individuals. Some people’s definition of a successful protest is changing what was wrong to them, no matter how they did it. Their mindset is similar an idea by Niccoló Machiavelli, “The ends justify the means.” Others have different perspectives. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.,for example, wanted change to evolve from the nonviolent, orderly protests of the African American in the United States. In his letter from Birmingham Jail, King states, “Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.” He needed to go to Birmingham to fight the injustice. Without the support of nonviolence, the CRM might not have been so effective. Even though King was jailed, tormented and ultimately killed for his and many other’s cause, the way he conducted the CRM will forever live on in history, and he will forever be considered a hero. King knew the correct way to protest, the right way to get things done, and the right way to create an outstanding movement.

Another man who greatly admired King’s work is Cesar Chavez, a man who believes that nonviolence is key to a meaningful protest. Chavez envisions a world where violence is absent and only nonviolent change is brought about. Chavez states in his article for the tenth anniversary of King’s death that, “Nonviolence is more powerful than violence” and that “Nonviolence provides the opportunity to stay on the offensive, and is of crucial importance to win any contest.” Chavez wants to persuade everyone to be nonviolent and to keep composure ultimately to gain support for the cause

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