In a recent facebook update, my source of all news, political and otherwise, a friend of mine posted a link to National Defense Authorization Act, with a statement “don’t go to occupy.” According to some this act, which has been passed by the senate, allows for the indefinite detainment of individuals “suspected” of engaging in terrorist activities without trial, including U.S. citizens. Many feel that this is a violation of constitutional rights. The Emphasis of this Blog post, however, is not meant to be questioning the Justness or unjustness of the act, though that is something we all should do, but rather, it is to ask: if people believe this act to be unjust, in what way can they combat it?
Would Civil disobedience be a viable option to those who felt this act to be unjust? or would the possibility of indefinite detainment transform the act of civil disobedience from the type of tool that we’ve seen used by Martin Luther King, Jr. to more of a form of Martyrdom like that possibly used by Socrates?
Would MLK have argued for the type of civil disobedience that he mentions in a Letter from a Birmingham Jail had their been the possibility of being imprisoned permanently without trial? What may have come of the Civil Rights movement if MLK and other civil rights leaders had been imprisoned indefinitely?
These question, among many others, come to me when thinking about this issue, and I was wondering what other people think about it. Would a law or act that does what this act is supposedly capable of doing render Civil Disobedience useless? If so, in what way could people resist an unjust act or law that is capable of doing what this act is supposedly capable of?