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Jordan C. Robison

Humanities 1100 (Wall)

October 17, 2017

Reflection Paper #2

Individuals such as Martin Luther King in his Letter from Birmingham Jail describes

his experience in jail to farther push his agenda much like Henry David Thoreau did in his

writing Civil Disobedience. Both individuals used Civil Disobedience as a form of peaceful

protest to enforce a change yet their experiences in jail seem to be complete opposites. How

they describe their experiences was done in a way that they could get more people to see their

side and follow their lead so that they could strengthen the ideal they were both working for.

King describes his experience in jail as being terrible in his letter but does so in a way

that shows to everyone, include white individuals, how the average colored man was treated so

that both sides would help push for a better world for both to live in. King writes in his letter An

unjust law is a code inflicted upon a minority which that minority had no part in enacting or

creating. He puts this trying to show everybody that because they are the minority they need

everyones help so they wont be treated as he was treated in jail.

In contrast Thoreau describes a much better experience in jail but it is used for the same

reasons that king describes a horrible experience. It was like travelling into a far country, such

as I had never expected to behold, to lie there for a night.. Saying that jail was just like

travelling is done to invite the public to follow his lead and to not fear going to jail because its
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just government paid vacation. By describing jail as such a wonderful place Thoreau could have

only been trying to recruit more people to push for what he thought needed to be changed.

Martin Luther King and Henry David Thoreau both used their letters to invite people to

fight for what they believed in by showing people exactly what was wrong and inviting them to

join suit. King basically said to join suit or you will be treated just as her was inside of the jail

and Thoreau said join me cause what they do to you if you dont listen is an extremely pleasant

experience that compares to a vacation. They both wrote what they needed to in order to outline

the issues with the world and farther push their own agendas.