Martin Luther King said people have a responsibility to disobey unjust laws.

Essay by ji11ian613College, UndergraduateA, October 2003

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Martin Luther King, Jr. described an unjust law as being "a code that is out of harmony

with the moral law." He believed that people have a responsibility to disobey unjust laws. I agree

with that statement because a law is something that everyone should believe in, and not something

that holds a community back. African Americans in Birmingham were being treated unfairly, and

I strongly agree that they have a right to disobey the prejudiced laws that denied them of their


African Americans in Birmingham were not being treated like Americans (or humans for

that matter). They deserved the same rights as everyone else, but they were unfairly denied those

rights. They spoke out against unjust laws, and also tried negotiating with authorities and

government officials many times, however, they were not successful. As a last resort, they

disobeyed the unethical laws, and I feel that was the right thing for them to do.

They knew that

by rebelling against the laws that they would have to pay the consequences, and they did so

anyway because it was their responsibility to bring attention to the laws in order to attempt to get

them changed.

I feel that it was okay for the people to disobey the laws because it brought much needed

attention to the issues that others, who were unaffected, were trying to ignore. The African

American community in Birmingham should have been given all the same rights as everyone else

in America. In Montgomery, Rosa Parks disobeyed the law that made her and her fellow black

citizens sit on the back of the bus. Her feet were tired and she did not feel that she should be

forced to stand just so that a white person could sit. When she refused to get up, she brought...