Anders Breivik: Knights Templar: Opening statement: Defence: Not Guilty: Political & Military Necessity to Defend Norway for Ethnic Norwegians: I am Sitting Bull of National European Indigenous Rights Movement. I do not acknowledge guilt for the actions of 22 July 2011 as a criminal act. My military attacks against the government building and Labour Party youth was a preventative attack against these traitors immigration policies, which are committing cultural destruction of ethnic Norwegians and their culture; as a tool for the Islamic colonization of Norway.
|::| 06.02.2012: Transcript: Breivik Court Statement |::|
|::| 2083 - EU Declaration of Independence: Court Opening Statements (PDF) |::|
|::| Political Necessity and Civil Disobedience, by JA Cohan, Pierce Law Review (PDF) |::|
|::| ICC Prosecutor: Rome Statute Art.8(2)(b)(iv) Military Necessity definition (PDF: Pg.5) |::|
3.70 Court/trial statements for Justiciar Knight and other patriotic resistance fighters after an operation
A trial is an excellent opportunity and a well suited arena the Justiciar Knight can use to publicly renounce the authority of the EUSSR/USASSR hegemony and the specific cultural Marxist / multiculturalist regime. After all, this hegemony is nothing more than a global criminal network consisting of fundamentally undemocratic, anti-national dictatorships.
The individual countries in this cultural Marxist/multiculturalist criminal network are not democracies and have not been real democracies since perhaps the 1950s. Instead they are dictated by a small elite of political and cultural leaders who deliberately use the state institutions and media companies to indoctrinate and control their own people. The accused should use this opportunity to present all available documentation, illustrations and proof included in this compendium (2083 – A European Declaration of Independence) to claim his innocence. However, he should also at a later stage in the trial demand freedom on behalf of his people and demand that the regime in question immediately and without hesitation capitulates to the pan-European tribunal – PCCTS, represented by the accused, the Justiciar Knight and the national patriotic forces he indirectly controls.
2083 - European Declaration of Independence, by Knights Templar: Andrew Berwick (12:23)
The Justiciar Knight must demand the right to form a cultural conservative tribunal consisting of the 20 most dedicated and trustworthy cultural conservative/patriotic leaders in the country. Furthermore, he must demand that that the national parliament immediately transfers all political powers to this newly established tribunal / cabinet. The Justiciar Knight must also demand at least 20 hours of unrestricted access to the national broadcasting company in order to consolidate and rally an initial and loyal patriotic military force (2000 should be a benchmark depending on the size of the country). The Justiciar Knight and the newly established tribunal will then appoint one trustworthy individual in his newly appointed cabinet to be the new national military commander with control of the national regular military forces. Martial law must be declared in this transitional period. (See relevant phase 3 strategies for more detailed descriptions).
By the time you are done presenting your demands, the judges and the trial audience will probably laugh their asses off and mock you for being ridiculous. Nevertheless, it is important to ignore the ridicule and remain firm and focused. After all, it is what we in fact expect to happen one day. If we truly believe that, then more people will as well. It might sound completely ridiculous and funny to most people today. But by presenting the following accusations and demands in all seriousness we are indirectly conditioning everyone listening for the conflicts and scenarios ahead. They will laugh today, but in the back of their minds, they have an ounce of fear, respect and admiration for our cause and the alternative and authority we represent. Because they know that it is not completely unlikely that the scenario you just described will in fact happen one day in a not too distant future.
So the key word is “conditioning”, through indirect psychological warfare, directed at our enemies by presenting them with given scenario. We are thus indirectly preparing not only our enemies but our people for what lies ahead. Do not whisper these accusations and demands but tell them out loudly and proudly.
Opening statement – Knights Templar trial
An opening statement is an introductory statement made by the attorneys for each side at the start of a trial. The opening statement, although not mandatory, is seldom waived because it offers a valuable opportunity to provide an overview of the case to the jury and to explain the anticipated proof that will be presented during the course of the trial.
The primary purpose of an opening statement is to apprise the trier of fact, whether jury or court, of the issues in question and to summarise the evidence that the party intends to offer during the trial. The Supreme Court has characterised an opening statement as "ordinarily intended to do no more than to inform the jury in a general way of the nature of the action and defence so that they may better be prepared to understand the evidence".
Most practitioners and legal scholars agree that an effective opening statement is vital to the trial process. The importance of an opening statement has been established by studies that showed that 80 percent of jurors' ultimate conclusions with respect to the verdict corresponded with their tentative opinion after opening statements. This is because an effective opening statement establishes the facts of the case and sets forth a legal theory and explanation for why the attorney's client should prevail.
Using the court proceedings as a platform to further our cause
The goal for the European resistance fighter is not to win the trial but to present all available evidence, presented in this compendium, and his cause in the most favourable way in order to help generate a maximum amount of sympathisers and supporters for the national and/or European patriotic resistance movement. The judges will not be sympathetic towards you because they are, after all, representatives of the regime we wish to defeat. After a successful operation, allowing capture and the subsequent court proceedings may presents several propaganda opportunities. The trial itself may not end up as anything else than a formality where the goal can be to change the law, forcing the parliament of that country to introduce the death penalty, or harshen the penal laws in other ways. Indirectly forcing the parliament of your country to change the laws will be an indirect victory to our movement because it will provide significant media coverage of our cause and thus will contribute to future recruitment efforts. Devastating attacks will develop into an existential conflict between the regime and the resistance movement where the regime ultimately will lose or will be forced to use Stalinist methods. In both cases, they will eventually lose.
Example - opening statement for Justiciar Knights or other European resistance fighters:
Biography: Sioux Indians: Sitting Bull: Chief of Lakota Nation [01/03]
To the jury and/or members of the court; I am standing here today as a Justiciar Knight Commander of the PCCTS, Knights Templar, a pan-European organisation which is a part of the patriotic National Resistance Movements in all Western European countries. I represent the highest national military and political authority considering the fact that we are the only military force in this country that represents the free patriotic people, as we are not on the pay roll of the category A and B traitors that you refer to as your superiors. When I speak, I speak on behalf of millions of Europeans who does not want to see their culture and territorial rights taken from them, who does not want to live under current or future dhimmitude and who does not accept that their own leaders are selling them against their will to Islamic slavery.
The current multiculturalist regimes of Western Europe are not at all democratic, this country is not democratic. They haven’t been democratic since the 1950s. There is no basis for democracy when all state institutions including schools, universities deliberately use advanced brainwashing techniques (as will be described later) to condition the people from resisting their own annihilation through the implementation of cultural Marxism / multiculturalist doctrines. Furthermore, there is no basis for democracy when 99% of all journalists support and propagate multiculturalism. There is no basis for democracy when all patriots and nationalists are ignored, ridiculed or persecuted. Factors such as these and many more have resulted in the Marxist tyranny we live under today.
The political and cultural elites are deliberately selling their own people into Islamic slavery by allowing demographical warfare.
Thomas Jefferson, the third President of the United States and the author of the US Declaration of Independence, stated;“The tree of liberty must be refreshed from time to time with the blood of patriots and tyrants.”
He also wrote:"That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organising its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness. [...] It is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security."
Geronimo: The Last Free Apache (05:53)
Refreshing the tree is now long overdue as our countries are in a rapid state of disintegration. The intention of the National Resistance Movement is to refresh the tree of liberty, and obviously not to cut it down. Refreshing the tree of liberty involves a coup supported by a significant portion of European patriots. Many of us will have to sacrifice our life for the cause in order to destroy the tyrants of our time. It is impossible to guarantee a democratically sanctioned coup as we have to keep in mind that Europeans have been brainwashed now for two generations. Many will oppose us for our stance and call us fascist. Nevertheless, it is essential to acknowledge and understand that we are not.
All coups involve the temporary suspension of the constitution. Thomas Jefferson himself knew that. However, the goal of the coup is as I said not to chop down the tree of liberty but to refresh it.
I would like to begin by saying that of all our attainments, the freedom of our people is the most precious and the most vulnerable. Preserving our freedom and sovereignty is what many of our forefathers dedicated their lives to and what so many thousands of our people have given their lives for. Our freedom, national identity and our culture in this country is the fruit of centuries even millennia’s of struggles. It is the result of a history that has no equal and has brought us to where we are today. I will present evidence proving that the freedom of our people, our culture, our traditions, our Christendom and our national identity is in the process of being deconstructed by cultural Marxists and multiculturalists in our country.
Before I continue I would like to read a quote from John Stuart Mill, a former English Member of Parliament and influential British thinker:“A person may cause evil to others not only by his actions but by his inaction, and in either case he is justly accountable to them for the injury.”
I will prove that these cultural Marxists infiltrated our state institutions after WW2, especially our schools, universities and the media. I will prove that our political system referred to as a democracy has over the last 6 decades developed into a cultural Marxist dictatorship controlled by a group of multiculturalist elites whose plans consist of the deconstructing our country’s traditions, national identity and even our nation state. The most influential of these individuals are referred to as category A and B traitors. This traitorous elite now controls a majority of our state intuitions, including the media and our courts. I will prove that they have deliberately and systematically undermined this country and their day to day betrayal continues to weaken the cultural defences of our country.
By deconstructing our cultural defences, these category A and B traitors have laid the foundation for cultural conquest, but it doesn’t end there. These category A and B traitors continue to facilitate and allow the ongoing Islamic colonisation of our country, a process better known as Islamic demographic warfare. This Islamic demographic warfare will eventually lead to the enslavement of our people under the Islamic Ummah. Due to the actions of these category A and B traitors we will end up as the persecuted Christian minority in Lebanon. Didn’t you know that Lebanon was once a Christian country with 80% Christians in 1911? I expect that you knew that.
However if you were unfamiliar with the successful Jihad in Lebanon I will present 10 other historical examples later on.
The following statement was written by Karl Popper, a philosopher at the London School of Economics:“If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them. We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant.”
I will prove that the only pragmatical approach, the only hope our people have of preventing the future enslavement of our people and preventing the ongoing cultural and demographical genocide is for every European to do what is required of him. Every European has not only a right but a duty to contribute to the efforts of our National Resistance Movement through armed struggle against all category A and B traitors. The PCCTS and the Justiciar Knights represents the highest military authority in this country because we are the only military force that acts in the interest of our people. We are the true manifestation of the will of our people which cannot be said about our regular national army as they are controlled by the multiculturalist category A and B traitors we wish to defeat.
The individuals I have been accused of illegally executing are all category A and B traitors, guilty of high treason and condemned to death by the highest legal authority in Europe and our country. This authority is known as the military and criminal tribunal; PCCTS. All the individuals I have been accused of illegally executing have deliberately used their influence in a way which makes them indirectly or directly guilty of charges 1- 8 which will be presented later.
The evidence I will present will prove not only that I am innocent of the crimes I have been accused of. It will prove that we, as the highest military authority in this country have the right to temporary suspend the constitution and to seize political and military control of our country until all category A and B traitors have been hunted down and executed. There are approximately xxxx category A and B traitors operating freely within the borders of our nation. I will get back to this point later.
The question that many now ask themselves is the following:
Biography: Sioux: Crazy Horse: Last Lakota Warrior [01/05]
Am I a Sitting Bull or a Hitler of our time? As you already know, Sitting Bull was a celebrated hero, a Native American Chief who fought on behalf of his people against General Armstrong Custer and the US force. Ask yourself, who is the Hitler of the two?
Sitting Bull or General Custer? Was Sitting Bull a terrorist because he fought for the indigenous rights of his people or was he a hero? That is the question that you will decide during this trial.
We, the armed European Resistance Movements, are in fact fighting for our indigenous rights (compared to the Islamic terrorists who are fighting for world domination – a global Caliphate based on Sharia law). An individual fighting for his indigenous rights is NOT a terrorist as history clearly proves. We are no more terrorists than the indigenous Brits who fought against the imperialistic Roman invaders, or the Americans who fought against English rule. We are no more terrorists than Sitting Bull, Crazy Horse or Chief Gall who fought for their people against the imperialist General Armstrong Custer.
WE are the Sitting Bulls, Crazy Horses and Chief Galls of our time and the imperialistic Custer’s of our time are called Barroso, Blair, Brown, Merkel and Sarkozy.
We, the PCCTS, Knights Templar and the Justiciar Knights of Europe and this country have dedicated our lives to defend and sacrifice ourselves for the freedom of our people, our culture, Christendom and our nation. We know what the risks are and we willingly pay the price for that every day. We do not complain about it; it is our own decision. It is my duty, as a Justiciar Knight of the European Resistance Movement to defend my people, my country and my culture from gradual systematic and deliberate genocide and this is the reason why I am standing here today. I know that the truth I represent is tough and hard to comprehend and accept in our politically correct times. But the majority of free and patriotic Europeans will learn that what I say here today is the truth.
We have the people on our side; we have the truth on our side. What do you have? It is every Europeans duty to defend their people and country against the ideology of genocide, conquest and destruction known as Islam.
I have nothing against individual Muslims. The problem is that Islam is a political ideology and the fact that the ongoing Islamisation of our country will eventually be the end of our freedom. Future generations will wonder how we, in 2010, at this location, in this room, served our most precious asset.
Will you condemn the patriotic heroes of the Resistance Movement for contributing to save their people and country from slavery and tyranny? Isn’t it the most basic human right to save your own people and culture from deliberate genocide and extermination?
The answer to that is immediately also the answer to the question whether individuals in this country are actually free or if they have already been reduced to slaves of the multiculturalist traitor elites.
Mark Twain once wrote:“During a time of change, the patriot is a scarce man. He is hated and scorned. When his cause succeeds however, the timid join him. For then it costs nothing to be a patriot. “ -- Mark Twain
According to you, this trial is about whether I, as a member of the National Resistance Movement also known as the National Indigenous Rights Movement, have the right to defend myself, my people and my culture by executing the category A and B traitors who are deliberately allowing the Islamic colonisation of our country.
But this trial is also about finding the truth. The statements I have made, the comparisons I have drawn – are they true? Because, if something is true, how can it be illegal?
Therefore I ask you, not only to grant my request for presenting all available evidence and documentation listed in the compendium: 2083 – A European Declaration of Independence, but also to allow the hearing of witnesses and experts in the field concerning the ongoing colonisation of Europe and who can attest to the fact that the traitors I have executed where facilitating and deliberately contributing to this process. I ask that this is done in full publicity.
I am not only referring to Witness 1 and Witness 2 but also on the expert witnesses from Country 1, Country 2, Country 3 and other countries. Preferably, all. I must have the ability to defend myself. I must be allowed to prove to you and to the people of this country that I have acted in the only rightful manner, in self defence through a preemptive attack. I must be allowed to prove that I executed these traitors in order to prevent them from continuing to contribute in the ongoing processes of cultural and demographical genocide and extermination. Please do not obstruct me from doing that.
Because without this documentation and the mentioned witnesses, I cannot defend myself in a proper way and in my view it will this will not be a fair trial. Thank you.
Civil Disobedience and the Necessity Defense
by JOHN ALAN COHAN
PIERCE LAW REVIEW Vol. 6, No. 1
NATO: Battle of Jus Sanguinis (Right of Blood) River Campaign (08:09)
Freedom of expression in a free society includes freewheeling public dissent on controversial political issues of the day. Civil disobedience is a form of protest that, while usually peaceful, involves violating the law -- usually by trespassing on government property, blocking access to buildings, or engaging in disorderly conduct. Civil disobedience has been called “the deliberate violation of law for a vital social purpose.” In their day in court, civil disobedients have at times sought to interpose the necessity defense to justify their conduct. The necessity defense asserts that breaking the law was justified in order to avert a greater harm that would occur as a result of the government policy the offender was protesting.
Protestors will seek to invoke the necessity defense not so much to gain acquittal from the relatively minor charges, but to advance the more important objective of publicly airing the moral and political issues that inspired their act of civil disobedience. There is the hope of gaining notoriety for a cause by discussing it in court, and “educating” the jury about political grievances or other social harms.
The strategy is meant to appeal to a higher principle than the law being violated.the necessity of stopping objectionable government policies, and to let the jury have an opportunity to weigh their technically illegal actions on the scales of justice. Acquittal is of course hoped for in the end but may be quite low on the protestors' list of priorities.The necessity defense is attractive to reformers who practice civil disobedience because it allows them to deny guilt without renouncing their socially driven acts. It offers a means to discuss political issues in the courtroom, a forum in which reformers can demand equal time and, perhaps, respect. Moreover, its elements allow civil disobedients to describe their political motivations. In proving the imminence of the harm, they can demonstrate the urgency of the social problem. In showing the relative severity of the harms, they can show the seriousness of the social evil they seek to avert. In establishing the lack of reasonable alternatives, they can assault the unresponsiveness of those in power in dealing with the problem and prod them to action. And in presenting evidence of a causal relationship, they can argue the importance of individual action in reforming society. Thus, the elements of the necessity defense provide an excellent structure for publicizing and debating political issues in the judicial forum.
The goal of describing their political motivations to the jury, and implicitly to the media, is subject to numerous hurdles inherent in the necessity defense. In most instances, as we will see, courts will rule as a matter of law that the actors have failed in the offer of proof regarding the elements of the necessity defense so that the jury rarely is given the chance to weigh in on the matter. On the other hand, if the defense is allowed, the jury is called upon to weigh controversial political issues and to function as the “conscience of the community.” “Reflected in the jury’s decision is a judgment of whether, under all the circumstances of the event and in the light of all known about the defendant, the prohibited act, if committed, deserves condemnation by the law.”3 In cases where judges have been persuaded to allow the necessity defense, juries have, often enough, delivered not guilty verdicts.
II. OVERVIEW OF CIVIL DISOBEDIENCE
A. Definition of Civil Disobedience
The Legend of Crazy Horse (10:00)
John Rawls defines civil disobedience as “a public, nonviolent, conscientious yet political act contrary to law usually done with the aim of bringing about a change in the law or policies of the government.” A more comprehensive definition of civil disobedience is:Civil disobedience is an act of protest, deliberately unlawful, conscientiously and publicly performed. It may have as its object the laws or policies of some governmental body, or those of some private corporate body whose decisions have serious public consequences; but in either case the disobedient protest is almost invariably nonviolent in character.
Broadly construed, civil disobedience may be directed toward a law or policy of the government, or toward a corporate entity whose policy is the subject of protest. Civil disobedients hope that their conduct makes a dramatic appeal to the conscience of the community, affects public awareness of a particular social issue, and motivates citizens to demand change in certain policies.
Civil disobedience is a singular hallmark of a free country:We must recognize that civil disobedience in various forms, used without violent acts against others, is engrained in our society and the moral correctness of political protestors’ views has on occasion served to change and better our society. Civil disobedience has been prevalent throughout this nation’s history extending from the Boston Tea Party and the signing of the Declaration of Independence, to the freeing of the slaves by operation of the Underground Railroad in the mid-1880’s. More recently, disobedience of “Jim Crow” laws served, among other things, as a catalyst to end segregation by law in this country, and violation of selective service laws contributed to our eventual withdrawal from the Viet Nam War.
Civil disobedience differs from other forms of peaceful protest in that there is a technical violation of the law such as trespass, blocking of public access, or disorderly conduct; and the violation is part of the effort to garner public attention to the cause. Ordinary forms of peaceful protest may simply involve peaceful picketing, circulating petitions, forming of rallies, and the like, in which proper police permits are obtained and there are no violations of the law.
B. Distinction Between Direct and Indirect Civil Disobedience
Deep Green Resistance: Decisive Ecological Warfare (DEW): Race 2 Save Planet: END:CIV Resist or Die (02:59)
There are two kinds of civil disobedience—direct and indirect. Direct civil disobedience involves the intentional violation of a specific law that, in and of itself, is challenged as unjust. An example would be smoking marijuana in public to protest a law that makes it unlawful to engage in such an act. Rosa Parks’ famous refusal to move from her seat on a Montgomery, Alabama bus was an act of direct civil disobedience because she violated the actual segregation ordinance then in place.
Indirect civil disobedience, which is undoubtedly the most frequent form of protest, involves the violation of a law which is not itself the object of protest. Indirect civil disobedience seeks to mobilize public opinion, typically through symbolic action. For example, the Freedom Riders protested segregation by riding buses, but authorities arrested them for trespass. Since they did not directly attack the bus law, they were characterized as engaging in indirect civil disobedience. While a person might trespass and block access of shipments to a nuclear power plant, the act is not committed to protest the trespass law under which the defendants are charged, but to protest the use of nuclear power. Or, to cite another example, students in France recently engaged in acts of violence and disorderly conduct to protest a law that allows employers to dismiss workers under the age of twenty-six without cause during their first two years on the job. The protestors do not contest the validity of the disorderly conduct laws, but believe their acts are necessary as a means to pressure officials to change the law.
Indirect civil disobedience might also target an unjust policy of a business organization, scientific laboratory, government facility, military contractor, or other entity. While trespass is the most frequent law that is violated, protestors commit other acts such as malicious mischief, obstruction of passage, assault, arson, or theft as a means of protesting an entirely separate issue or policy. Protests in modern times are often directed toward such issues as nuclear power, war, human rights violations, animal cruelty, and environmental pollution.
The distinction between direct and indirect civil disobedience is important because significant case law holds that the necessity defense is available only to defendants charged with direct civil disobedience. The leading case on this point is United States v. Schoon, in which the Ninth Circuit held that the necessity defense, with respect to civil disobedience, is available only for direct, not indirect, civil disobedience. We will discuss the Schoon case in Part IV.
It may be difficult to make a clear distinction between direct and indirect civil disobedience.10 One person may engage in civil disobedience by refusing to be drafted because of objections to the draft law, while another person may refuse to be drafted because of objections to an unjust war, with the former, not the latter, being direct civil disobedience.
When people seek to prevent military action by trying to disarm weapons, are they engaged in indirect or direct civil disobedience? When people block a road to stop trucks from coming in to cut down virgin timber, is that indirect civil disobedience because it is a violation of a neutral traffic law or is it direct civil disobedience because it seeks to actually stop the challenged action? The distinction does not work well for the now historically-approved actions of those who protested against segregation: people like Martin Luther King, Jr., who famously spent time in 1963 in a Birmingham jail for engaging in an illegal march against segregation. Was he directly protesting the necessity of a permit, or was he trying to stop segregation? Under a rigid distinction, he was engaged in indirect civil disobedience and thus would not have been able to raise the defense of necessity.
Some of the most important advancements in civil rights have been a product of direct civil disobedience. In the 1960s there were a great many instances of direct civil rights protest, with direct violations of segregation and discrimination laws. For example, in Lombard v. State,13 the U.S. Supreme Court reversed the convictions of four students who staged a sit-in demonstration at a whites-only lunch counter in New Orleans, to protest that city’s custom of refusing to allow segregated service in restaurants. In Hamm v. Rock Hill, the Court vacated charges against defendants convicted of state trespass statutes for participating in sit-ins at lunch counters that had a policy of refusing service to blacks. These protests involved direct civil disobedience in that the actors specifically targeted the policies at these eating establishments, although the defendants were charged with trespass, not with violating the policies in question. Additionally, there were innumerable instances of indirect civil disobedience involving sit-ins, which resulted in over 3000 prosecutions for criminal trespass and similar violations. These violations culminated in the enactment of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, which set an end to discriminatory practices in public accommodations.
C. Historic Instances of Civil Disobedience
Northwest Front: Harold Covington discusses Direct Action Regime Change: The Brandenburg lecture series deals with the landmark Supreme Court ruling in Brandenburg v. Ohio, whereby discussions about direct action to bring about non-consensual (possibly violent) regime change, are not actionable. [01|02|03|04|Podcast]
Of course, civil disobedience is something of a democratic tradition. In numerous countries the government allows no public display of displeasure with government policies. For example, demonstrators in Arab republics have been known to be sentenced to public lashings and prison terms for taking part in demonstrations against the government. In Arab countries, a sentence of flogging is seen as “an ultimate humiliation and carries connotations of heresy.” Additionally, political protests in China are dealt with by arresting the offenders and keeping them incarcerated for extended periods of time.
As early as 1635, American colonists were persecuted for direct civil disobedience in refusing to obey certain laws by reason of conscience.
Acts of direct civil disobedience to the English crown were the hallmark of the American Revolution, including the Boston Tea Party. Opposition to slavery involved numerous kinds of direct civil disobedience, including aiding and abetting runaway slaves.21 In 1846, Henry David Thoreau wrote his famous and influential essay, On the Duty of Civil Disobedience, in which he gave a cogent argument on the necessity of direct civil disobedience:Unjust laws exist: shall we be content to obey them, or shall we endeavor to amend them, and obey them until we have succeeded, or shall we transgress them at once?
. . . .
. . . If the injustice [of the machine of government] has a spring, or a pulley, or a rope, or a crank, exclusively for itself, then perhaps you may consider whether the remedy will not be worse than the evil; but if it is of such a nature that it requires you to be the agent of injustice to another, then, I say, break the law. Let your life be a counter friction to stop the machine.
Direct civil disobedience was in play in 1872 when Susan B. Anthony was indicted and convicted for violating a federal law that prohibited voting in congressional elections without having a lawful right to vote. She managed to persuade a voting registrar to register her in violation of a state law that restricted voting rights to men and voted for a congressional election in New York State. Ms. Anthony fully conceded the facts alleged in the indictment, and the court directed the jury to find a verdict of guilty because the facts constituting guilt were undisputed.
Before the judge pronounced sentence of a $100 fine, it was reported that Ms. Anthonyhad a great many things to say, and declared that in her trial every principle of justice had been violated; that every right had been denied; that she had had no trial by her peers; that the Court and the jurors were her political superiors and not her peers, and an nounced her determination to continue her labors until equality was obtained, and was proceeding to discuss the question involved in the case, when she was interrupted by the Court with the remark that these questions could not be reviewed.
Following the conviction of Ms. Anthony, indirect civil disobedience quickly emerged as the mode of choice in the women’s suffrage movement, with the fight for women’s rights characterized by “direct action, civil disobedience, public disruptions, and passive resistance.” In 1913, over 5000 women marched in Washington on the eve of the inauguration of Woodrow Wilson. In May of 1917, police arrested over 200 women for obstructing the sidewalk in front of the White House. Congress later passed the suffrage amendment in early 1918, and it was ratified by the states on August 26, 1920.
In more recent times we have seen many instances of indirect civil disobedience in the areas of nuclear disarmament, nuclear power, environmental pollution, and anti-abortion advocacy.
Sometimes civil disobedience will involve private rather than public acts, such as conscientious resistance to an unjust law in an effort to avert the evil effects of the law. An example would be secretly smuggling immigrants across the border for the purpose of securing their safety, rather than as a public challenge to immigration policy. Another example would be occupying an abortion clinic for the purpose of physically preventing abortions scheduled that day, rather than as an appeal for legal change of the law. Some acts can be hybrid, that is, a combination of a public appeal as well as conscientious resistance to the policy in question.
In the 1960s, a period of widespread civil disobedience, both direct and indirect, the norm was that one would willingly accept the penalty. Addressing the topic of direct civil disobedience, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. said from his Birmingham jail cell:One who breaks an unjust law must do so . . . with a willingness to accept the penalty. I submit that an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for law.
The idea is that accepting legal consequences shows that the civil disobedient seeks to better society within the parameters of the social contract, to be persuasive, and to behave ethically. In the event the protestor is convicted, serving time in jail will, according to Dr. King, “arouse the conscience of the community” over an unjust state of affairs.
Accepting the consequences is something that judges today sometimes emphasize:One characteristic of civil disobedience is the recognition by its practitioner that he must face the legal consequences of his offense. Indeed, it is the appearance of martyrdom for a just cause which focuses public attention upon the disobedient crusader thereby hastening the achievement of his goal.
However, in today’s era of special interest groups seeking to persuade public opinion, civil disobedients inevitably seek acquittal of the charges rather than willingly accepting the legal consequences for their acts. By invoking the necessity defense, they hope to garner public awareness and sympathy for their cause. If the judge allows the jury to consider the necessity defense, this will often entail the introduction of expert testimony on the imminent danger that the protestors sought to avert, and significant media attention is likely to be given the case.
» » » » [Excerpt: Civil Disobedience & Political Necessity (PDF)]