Repent Harlequin “Civil Disobedience,” was influenced during Henry David Thoreau’s imprisonment because of his refusal to pay taxes that would fund the war. This essay specifies his ideas of transcendentalism by rebelling against what he did not believe in, therefore seeking a more simplistic idea. Thoreau explains his opposition against the system of the state, and I agree with his argument.
I agree with Thoreau view of the state forcing people into categories. The state influences those who want to fit in; highlighting those who are intelligent enough to take the power they are given and use it for themselves, and demonetizing those who despise their actions and seek change. The state encourages people to serve with their bodies and discourages people to serve with their conscience because act according to morals does more harm to them. I somewhat agree with Thoreau’s classification of citizens as those who serve with their bodies, head, and conscience. I agree with how Thoreau describes those who serve the state are machines, nothing more than servants to the system. Regardless of how they feel or what morals they have, it doesn’t matter. In serving the state, moral distinctions are pushed aside and are used by however the state sees fit; nothing more than a tool only to be tossed aside when it’s no longer useful.
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Furthermore, People would blindly follow the state because they are lead to believe that it’s the right thing to do. Since it is what society deems as normal. It’s easier to conform because being something else is difficult and frowned upon.
Being the outcast isn’t socially acceptable, therefore, it’s human nature to want to feel like they belong. People will even obey the state, regardless of the reasons and intentions, feeling that since other people are okay with it then it’s out of their control. People who serve the state with their minds have the ability to revile the innocent without being penalized. Moral distinctions are rarely established, eventually making decisions without second thoughts about the outcome.
They ignore the possibility of their action affecting others. They are, as Thoreau describes it, individuals who hold power and influence over other people. In some cases, they may even use the state for their own agendas. "Others—as most legislators, politicians, lawyers, ministers, and office-holders—serve the state chiefly with their heads;" These are the people who are intelligent enough to figure things out and to separate themselves from the common people. These people are the ones who order other people and to some extent, the state.
To quote the Ticktokman "Most people enjoy order," People will mindlessly follow this order, however, losing their individual freedoms. The few that serve the state with their conscience are the ones that hold the ability to resist with what they disagree with. Their moral values influence them more than any government ever could. For that reason, they are viewed as criminals. Patriots, rebels, martyr; whatever the name, are viewed in a negative connotation by the state. These people possess the will to follow what they believe in. They don’t just let things happen, they take action. I disagree with Thoreau’s statement, “but they put themselves on a level with wood and earth and stones; and wooden men can perhaps be manufactured that will serve the purpose as well.
Such command no more respect than men of straw or.