Comparing Martin Luther King Jr. And Henry David Thoreau

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Martin Luther King Jr. and Henry David Thoreau both convey similar beliefs, but different points on society in their times. King conveys in his “Letter from a Birmingham Jail” that society is favoritism of one race; whereas Thoreau feels it is corrupt in his “Resistance to Civil Government.” In Kings eyes, he feels that “Negroes have experienced grossly unjust treatment in the courts.” (LBJ p5) Racism toward the Negroes should have ended in the courts since it is legal matter and in the Constitution, man has the right to a fair and speedy trial. Since they are accused the same as the whites, they should have the same treatment in court. “Freedom is never voluntarily given by the oppressor; it must be demanded by the oppressed.” (LBJ p9) It is stressed by society that if one wants something done, they must…show more content…
Both King and Thoreau deliberately fought for what they felt was politically correct in their times. King wanted racial equality, so he protested his want and eventually racial equality happened. Thoreau wanted a more politically correct society and little by little, society is changing. “He was opposed to taxes that went to support the government itself – even if he could not tell if his particular contribution would eventually be spent on an unjust project or a beneficial one.” (RCG p10) Thoreau did not even want to contribute to society by paying taxes because he felt that if he gave money to an already corrupt system, the system would just keep getting worse. “He prefers living simply because he therefore has less to lose.” (RCG p10) Thoreau was perfectly fine with having a little more than nothing. If he had more, he would be stimulating the government and society that he dislikes so much. Why would he

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