Civil Disobedience And Manifest Destiny Analysis

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Civil Disobedience and Manifest Destiny?

What is Civil Disobedience exactly? Well in 1849, an American Author by the name of Henry David Thoreau wrote an inspiring piece of literature stating the injustice and unruliness of the governments ways and how America was being run. In the essay that he wrote, he states “I ask for, not at once no government, but at once a better government,” (Henry David Thoreau). What he means is that he’s not asking for there not to be a government, but for there to be a better one. “After all, the practical reason why, when the power is once in the hands of the people, a majority are permitted, and for a long period continue, to rule is not because they are most likely to be in the right, nor because this seems …show more content…

Henry spent a night at jail because he stood up for what he believes in. He didn’t pay his poll taxes in 1846 (taxes/fees on voting in some states) because he believed that it was to fund the Mexican-American war (in which he didn’t believe in) and for the expansion of slavery (he didn’t believe in this either) in the Southwest which later on was actually found out that poll taxes had nothing to do with the Mexican-American war and that his arrest was technically illegal (Brookes). Luckily, someone paid his taxes which eventually let him free. His arrest led him to writing his essay, Civil Disobedience about his experience with the Mexican-American war. In his essay of Civil Disobedience, Thoreau exclaims many social issues that were going on around that time that also inspired his essay. The social issues that were going on around the time were the Relocation of the Native-Americans, which ties in with Manifest Destiny, slavery, poll taxes, Mexican-American war, and many more.
Henry Thoreau didn’t believe in what the government was doing and how they were running American. Manifest Destiny was a big concept during all those times which really triggered the Domino effect with disagreement of how the Mexicans were being forced out of their territory which eventually led up to the Mexican-American …show more content…

He also explains that we, as American citizens, not only have the right, but the duty to rebel against the government. However, because of the enslavement of about one-sixth of the population and with the invasion of Mexico, he speaks about not letting it continue any longer and to stop the unjust of it all.
Thoreau furthermore exclaims in his essays that the Americans citizens should have followed what power they thought was right, like their conscience, instead of the wrong of the government. Thoreau ultimately sent the message that if following what was right and following your heart really believes in like the right of doing right; then let it be and so live life in spite of what one thinks.
The government can’t take away what is rightfully yours; the freedom of speech, as stated in the first amendment and Thoreau obviously used that to his greatest and wisest. Thoreau greatly and with heart encouraged the pacifistic protest- because he doesn’t believe in violence and chaos- and also defending civil liberties. Thoreau’s essay although wasn’t really acknowledge at the time, probably due to the outcry of his powerful speech, but it eventually led up to inspiring other inspiring folk’s civil rights

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