It may be in a great strait, and not know what to do: I have paid no poll-tax for six years.
Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also a prison We love eloquence for its own sake, and not for any truth which it may utter, or any heroism it may inspire. The aim is to bring social change and end the unruly system of the powerful authority. No man with a genius for legislation has appeared in America.
It triggered a widespread discontent among people of all classes against the British rule. A wise man will not leave the right to the mercy of chance, nor wish it to prevail through the power of the majority.
As for adopting the ways which the State has provided for remedying the evil, I know not of such ways. I do not care to trace the course of my dollar, if I could, till it buys a man or a musket to shoot one with- the dollar is innocent- but I am concerned to trace the effects of my allegiance.
What is the price-current of an honest man and patriot today. Why do they not dissolve it themselves- the union between themselves and the State- and refuse to pay their quota into its treasury.
But when the friction comes to have its machine, and oppression and robbery are organized, I say, let us not have such a machine any longer. I must get off him first, that he may pursue his contemplations too. It is for no particular item in the tax-bill that I refuse to pay it.
The American has dwindled into an Odd Fellow-one who may be known by the development of his organ of gregariousness, and a manifest lack of intellect and cheerful self-reliance; whose first and chief concern, on coming into the world, is to see that the almshouses are in good repair; and, before yet he has lawfully donned the virile garb, to collect a fund for the support of the widows and orphans that may be; who, in short, ventures to live only by the aid of the Mutual Insurance company, which has promised to bury him decently.
It is not my business to be petitioning the Governor or the Legislature any more than it is theirs to petition me; and if they should not bear my petition, what should I do then.
Trade and commerce, if they were not made of india-rubber, would never manage to bounce over the obstacles which legislators are continually putting in their way; and, if one were to judge these men wholly by the effects of their actions and not partly by their intentions, they would deserve to be classed and punished with those mischievous persons who put obstructions on the railroads.
I think that we should be men first, and subjects afterward. I meet this American government, or its representative, the State government, directly, and face to face, once a year- no more- in the person of its tax-gatherer; this is the only mode in which a man situated as I am necessarily meets it; and it then says distinctly, Recognize me; and the simplest, the most effectual, and, in the present posture of affairs, the indispensablest mode of treating with it on this head, of expressing your little satisfaction with and love for it, is to deny it then.
At most, they give only a cheap vote, and a feeble countenance and God-speed, to the right, as it goes by them. A wise man will only be useful as a man, and will not submit to be "clay," and "stop a hole to keep the wind away," but leave that office to his dust at least: It is truly enough said that a corporation has no conscience; but a corporation of conscientious men is a corporation with a conscience.
And, above all, there is this difference between resisting this and a purely brute or natural force, that I can resist this with some effect; but I cannot expect, like Orpheus, to change the nature of the rocks and trees and beasts. But even suppose blood should flow.
If they pay the tax from a mistaken interest in the individual taxed, to save his property, or prevent his going to jail, it is because they have not considered wisely how far they let their private feelings interfere with the public good.
It is not worth the while to snivel about it. Thus, under the name of Order and Civil Government, we are all made at last to pay homage to and support our own meanness.
Resistance to Civil Government (Civil Disobedience) is an essay by American transcendentalist Henry David Thoreau that was first published in In it, Thoreau argues that individuals should not permit governments to overrule or atrophy their consciences.
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Given these circumstances, in his essay on civil disobedience Thoreau encourages, in one of the important quotes from “Civil Disobedience” by Thoreau that, “every man make known what kind of government would command his respect [as] one step toward obtaining it" ().
Get ready to write your paper on Civil Disobedience with our suggested essay topics, sample essays, and more. Essay on Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau Civil Disobedience was written by Henry David Thoreau.
The Letter From A Birmingham Jail was written by Martin Luther King Jr. Civil Disobedience. By Henry David Thoreau. My civil neighbor, the tax-gatherer, is the very man I have to deal with- for it is, after all, with men and not with parchment that I quarrel- and he has voluntarily chosen to be an agent of the government.
How shall he ever know well what he is and does as an officer of the government, or.Essay on civil disobedience quotes