Resisting Unjust Laws Then and Now, Stayed on the Call of Freedom and Cooperation

(Image: ValuableGangOfYoungNegroes1840.jpeg from wikimedia commons…)

Many laws in our history have been resisted as unjust, from the Enclosure of the Commons, to the Cherokee Removal which was litigated successfully by the Cherokee nation, to the Fugitive Slave Act of 1850, to the recent Muslim ban.

In the 17th century, from whence this popular folk song comes, litigation was not an option for most people, so they resisted in rhyme:

They hang the man and flog the woman
Who steals the goose from off the common
Yet let the greater villain loose
That steals the common from the goose

And then as now, community cooperation on a very wide scale was key to winning the freedoms promised in our foundational documents like the Magna Carta, the Constitution, and the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.  So we continue to walk, rhyme, and support court and non-violent community-based actions to cooperate in making this a safer and kinder world for all of us, and to non-cooperate with injustice.

Read, Write, Dream, Walk !
ShiraDest

October 22nd, 12017 HE

5 thoughts on “Resisting Unjust Laws Then and Now, Stayed on the Call of Freedom and Cooperation

  1. I followed some of the links you provided. I am aware of the passive resistance movement Gandhi introduced, I just didn’t know the term non-cooperation. Did you know he used to live in South Africa (my country), practicing as a lawyer? His resistance to White Supremacy started then, when ‘they’ told him he wasn’t allowed to sit in the white’s-only coach while travelling by train.

    To apply the philosophy of non-cooperation to one’s own life isn’t easy. I find myself on the margins of a community I choose not to integrate with. I would like to think it is a form of non-cooperation with/to this community due to their world-view, which I can’t agree with. It’s a racist society, simultaneously (psychologically) violent in their insistence on Christianity as the only acceptable religion.

    Not supporting unjust laws and may I add daily societal practices, is the moral right of any human being who chooses to boycott such laws and practices – and take the consequences. I would have liked to bypass my closest town altogether but due to circumstances am forced to buy my groceries there. I’m currently growing my first vegetables and bought a freezer to preserve the crop so I can use the town less and less.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. ” I’m currently growing my first vegetables and bought a freezer to preserve the crop so I can use the town less and less.”
      Excellent!
      Yes, I’ve read Gandhi’s autobiography and was impressed to see that it all started there in South Africa. I am equally impressed by your words, and I appreciate and wish you the very best in your own non-cooperation.
      Warmest Wishes and Safe Hugs if Wanted,
      Shira

      Like

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