As did Thoreau, Gandhi, and the Rev. MLK Jr., I firmly believe in non-violent, civil disobedience to accomplish social and political change. Violent rioting, arson, vandalism, people getting injured or killed don’t accomplish much in the long run. MLK Jr. said “Fill the jails”, advocating a strict tactic of non violence, involving large numbers of protesters sitting passively in the streets, blocking traffic in the process, or blocking entrances to key buildings, thus forcing police to carry their purposely-made limp bodies to paddy wagons and then to jail. Eventually the jails fill and the cops run out of places to house those arrested. And since they’re not resisting, the only charge would probably be trespassing or non compliance with a police order, which eventually will be dismissed. It’s a win-win: the demonstrators get their point across along with gaining the sympathy and support of many in the community at large. And instigators of violence like Donald Trump are disarmed in this process. It would be tough to write a nasty tweet against a few hundred peaceful citizens who’ve just been carried off to jail, literally, for their justified, principled grievances and for trespassing.
With violent protests, as we’re seeing in some cities now, you feed into the hands of people like Trump who [Read more…] about A Plea to Return to Non-Violent Civil Disobedience