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If a law is stupid, is it okay to break it?


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  #1  
May 22nd, 2007, 10:37 AM
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Hypothetically, if a law is stupid and senseless, do you feel it is okay to break it?
Do you feel it is in a sense your DUTY to break it so that you make it very clear that you do not support such nonsense?
Or do you follow the law because it's the law, period.

Examples:
Would you pay your taxes even if the government hypothetically invaded another country and you didn't agree with it?
Would you obey a law that made, say, racial segregation LEGAL again?
If you are out in the middle of nowhere and the speed limit is 55 but you know you can safely drive 80, do you go ahead and speed?
If cigarettes or wine became illegal, do you think you would go ahead and buy them anyway on the premise that it is your right to do whatever you want with your body?
Or, say you are pro-choice but abortion became illegal. Would you work as a receptionist or something in an illegal clinic?
Say you just bought a house. Then you find out that the city law only allows homeowners to have 4 pets on their property. You have six cats. Do you get rid of two of your cats, or just break the law?
Etc.
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  #2  
May 22nd, 2007, 10:53 AM
Butter's Avatar Heather the Mama Duk
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I follow the law because it is the law. I even drive the speed limit. If a law is being made that I don't agree with (like segregation) I feel it is my duty to fight it as much as I can and even if it is made into a law to continue to try to get it changed, but I'm too chicken to break a law once it's a law.
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  #3  
May 22nd, 2007, 10:58 AM
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I'm too chicken to break most laws. I do speed (which i'm trying to stop doing, too many tickets) and I've been known to drive without wearing my seatbelt sometimes. I'm not saying those things are ok but I think the majority of the american people break laws at some point, even if it's just something small.
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  #4  
May 22nd, 2007, 10:58 AM
chloe82
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Quote:
Hypothetically, if a law is stupid and senseless, do you feel it is okay to break it?
Do you feel it is in a sense your DUTY to break it so that you make it very clear that you do not support such nonsense?
Or do you follow the law because it's the law, period.

Examples:
Would you pay your taxes even if the government hypothetically invaded another country and you didn't agree with it?
Would you obey a law that made, say, racial segregation LEGAL again?
If you are out in the middle of nowhere and the speed limit is 55 but you know you can safely drive 80, do you go ahead and speed?
If cigarettes or wine became illegal, do you think you would go ahead and buy them anyway on the premise that it is your right to do whatever you want with your body?
Or, say you are pro-choice but abortion became illegal. Would you work as a receptionist or something in an illegal clinic?
Say you just bought a house. Then you find out that the city law only allows homeowners to have 4 pets on their property. You have six cats. Do you get rid of two of your cats, or just break the law?
Etc.[/b]
I would say, in general, I try to follow and obey the law unless it violates my personal religious beliefs. (which I haven't run into yet) ie) If they made laws that required me to treat other people wrongly, ie, partake in racial segregation, the laws that started popping up under Hitler's early rule, etc, then no, I wouldn't follow them. My spiritual beliefs come before any government. I did think ahead on this issue when I became a nurse...as a PL Christian I knew that if I was ever legally required to assist in any euthanasia or abortion I would not comply.
However, I'm not going to pretend I have always followed every law....sure I've gone over the speed limit here and there. That doesn't make it ok though. It's not something I have done to make a point, just something I have done. I would only break a law to make a point like I said, if it violated my religious beliefs.

As far as the examples go:
-depends on the severity of the situation....are we talking America in Iraq or Nazi Germany trying to take over the world? I would consider zero compliance with the latter.... it would have to be an extreme situation that I felt very strongly about to not pay my taxes at all
-no I wouldn't partake in racial segregation
-i have sped before but don't think it's ok to do it consciously, therefore, hypothetically, no
-no i wouldn't buy illegal alcohol and cigarettes, but I don't drink and smoke anyways
-no i wouldn't work in an illegal clinic since I'm PL anyways
-the pet question.....i would have a terrible time with it but I wouldn't risk a criminal record, I would find a good home for 2 of the cats
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  #5  
May 22nd, 2007, 11:15 AM
SusieQ2's Avatar Jersey Girl
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I don't think it is ok to break any laws but I still do it (things like speeding). If I were to be caught I'd accept the consequences because I knew what I was doing was wrong.

I have very different feelings to each of those questions that you asked. I can't really say what I'd do because I don't know what the penalty would be. I speed but that generally only results in a fine. Now if we are talking about a law that if broken would result in jail time then I highly doubt I'd break it! I don't think I'd do well in jail!
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  #6  
May 22nd, 2007, 11:20 AM
lotus86's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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No. The law is the law, if you break it, there are consequences. I will admit that I have broken laws but I will not be so egotistical as to say that because *I* disagree with a law, I can break it if I feel like it just because I don't agree with it.
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  #7  
May 22nd, 2007, 11:50 AM
Caeden&#39;sMama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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I don't think the law is always right, therefore i can never agree with always following it 100%, blindly. HOWEVER, i also believe that when you make the choice to break a law, you have to understand, and therefore accept the risks and consequences associated with doing so. So really, it's a matter of weighing out what is more important to you...

As for the individual situations listed, here are my thoughts:

Would you pay your taxes even if the government hypothetically invaded another country and you didn't agree with it?

Well, i don't agree with a LOT of what our taxes are going towards, but i'm still paying them. Here, i guess the consequences are worse than whatever statement i'd be making. Instead, i feel it's better to try and work on changing how things are spent by voting.

Would you obey a law that made, say, racial segregation LEGAL again?

i don't think so. As it is, i refuse to answer any of those dumb "What ethnicity are you?" questions, because i don't see the need, and it pisses me off that we're still asking those types of questions in this day and age.

If you are out in the middle of nowhere and the speed limit is 55 but you know you can safely drive 80, do you go ahead and speed?

On a smaller scale, yes... I'm barely even comfortable going 75 in a 75 zone sometimes, so i can't really see *80* being necessary. But where i live, there are some areas where they SERIOUSLY underestimate the appropriate speed limit, and yes... if i feel it's safe, i will exceed that. But i also know what i'm risking, and can't complain if i get pulled over because of it.

If cigarettes or wine became illegal, do you think you would go ahead and buy them anyway on the premise that it is your right to do whatever you want with your body?


Well, i don't smoke or drink for PERSONAL reasons, so no i wouldn't buy them. But i wouldn't agree with them being made illegal either. I guess if i were terminally ill, and marijuana was the only thing that made me comfortable, i would risk those laws to get it... So sometimes i see the risk being qorth it, i guess.

Or, say you are pro-choice but abortion became illegal. Would you work as a receptionist or something in an illegal clinic?

I'm pro-life, so to spin it around... Would i ever allow myself to be forced to be associated with abortions? No. Not worth it to me. Throw me in jail if you like, but i could never do that...

Say you just bought a house. Then you find out that the city law only allows homeowners to have 4 pets on their property. You have six cats. Do you get rid of two of your cats, or just break the law?

Well, i would think i'd know that beforehand... But no, my animals are my family. I'd take that risk, because if the worse happened and i got caught, i could always just move again. No biggie.


So, as you can see... I don't have any blanket answer as far as following the law. I think each circumstance is different, and have to weigh it out for myself... as does every other person. We all have to make those choices based on our belief systems, and our willingness to accept whatever consequences may come...
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  #8  
May 22nd, 2007, 12:07 PM
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I do not think it is right to break a law just because it is "stupid". However, if a law is immoral or unethical, my conscience comes first.

edited 'cuz I cain't spel
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  #9  
May 22nd, 2007, 12:08 PM
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I believe in upholding and obeying the laws of the land, however, if they go against my religious or moral beliefs then it is okay to break them. Think of Nazi Germany how many morally, anti-religious and hateful laws they had. I would not follow those laws.
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  #10  
May 22nd, 2007, 12:27 PM
KarateMom's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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No, it's not okay to break a law even if you think it's stupid.

ETA: I'm referring to civil laws, not moral laws.
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  #11  
May 22nd, 2007, 12:31 PM
Caeden&#39;sMama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
No, it's not okay to break a law even if you think it's stupid.[/b]
So... Do you think Rosa Parks was wrong for not giving up her seat on the bus? You think no blacks should have ever broken the law in their quest to get equal rights? Nobody should have broken the laws in Germany by harboring Jews? They should have just given them up, because that was the law?

Quote:
No, it's not okay to break a law even if you think it's stupid.

ETA: I'm referring to civil laws, not moral laws.[/b]
Lol... Nevermind! Edited after i posted...
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  #12  
May 22nd, 2007, 01:28 PM
KarateMom's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
Quote:
No, it's not okay to break a law even if you think it's stupid.[/b]
So... Do you think Rosa Parks was wrong for not giving up her seat on the bus? You think no blacks should have ever broken the law in their quest to get equal rights? Nobody should have broken the laws in Germany by harboring Jews? They should have just given them up, because that was the law?

Quote:
No, it's not okay to break a law even if you think it's stupid.

ETA: I'm referring to civil laws, not moral laws.[/b]
Lol... Nevermind! Edited after i posted...
[/b]
lol...yeah, I answered and then re-thought my answer!
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  #13  
May 22nd, 2007, 04:52 PM
mommyKathyX3
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I'm part of the one that asked this originally cause so many people think its no big deal to smoke a joint on occasion. They think its no big deal (aka stupid) so its not a big deal to break the law.


I agree that as long as it doesnt go against my moral belief, then I'll follow the law even if I disagree with it.

The bible even say to follow the law as long as it doesnt comprimise your belief.
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  #14  
May 22nd, 2007, 05:05 PM
Ms.Michelle
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Quote:
Hypothetically, if a law is stupid and senseless, do you feel it is okay to break it?
Do you feel it is in a sense your DUTY to break it so that you make it very clear that you do not support such nonsense?
Or do you follow the law because it's the law, period.[/b]
I think a person really has to have a conviction about it.

I have thought about the idea of duty you speak of in regards to the top-less laws in Canada. It was about 10 years ago* some gals in Ontario "broke" the law by sunbathing topless. They were ticketed/charged and fought it. They won the right to be topless for their province and there were a few women in other provinces who also went topless to use that same ruling. It would apply in their own province. I kept thinking maybe I should be the one in Alberta who does it. I didn't. (Maybe now would be the time?)

Quote:
It was a hot, muggy day in Guelph, Ontario, in the summer of 1991, and 19-year-old university student Gwen Jacob decided she had as much right as a man to cool off by taking a walk topless. Her subsequent conviction for public indecency was overturned this past winter, and with summer temperatures finally on the rise, the exhibitionist controversy is heating up all across Canada. The Ontario Court of Appeal ruled in December that Ms. Jacob's topless stroll was not a breach of the federal Criminal Code because she had not violated "community standards." Traditionally, whenever a federal law is involved, courts in other Canadian provinces follow the precedent. Already, the Ontario ruling has had an effect: Police in Winnipeg, Manitoba, decided not to lay charges against a woman seen bare-breasted in public. In Maple Ridge, British Columbia, a woman celebrated Canada Day (July 1) by going topless. She threatened to sue for $245 million had she been charged. The authorities did nothing.[/b]
Source and another source: Topless meeting reduces issue to God verus Devil

*Apparently it's more like 16 years ago.
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  #15  
May 22nd, 2007, 09:03 PM
donomama
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Quote:
I have thought about the idea of duty you speak of in regards to the top-less laws in Canada. It was about 10 years ago* some gals in Ontario "broke" the law by sunbathing topless. They were ticketed/charged and fought it. They won the right to be topless for their province and there were a few women in other provinces who also went topless to use that same ruling. It would apply in their own province. I kept thinking maybe I should be the one in Alberta who does it. I didn't. (Maybe now would be the time?) [/b]

You totally should do it, but do it right after your milk comes in


I personally think all laws should be followed. If you don't agree with a law, fight to have it changed. Until then, follow it.
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  #16  
May 22nd, 2007, 09:12 PM
Caeden&#39;sMama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
I personally think all laws should be followed. If you don't agree with a law, fight to have it changed. Until then, follow it.[/b]
Ummm... Even if you lived in Nazi Germany?
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  #17  
May 22nd, 2007, 09:14 PM
donomama
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Quote:
Quote:
I personally think all laws should be followed. If you don't agree with a law, fight to have it changed. Until then, follow it.[/b]
Ummm... Even if you lived in Nazi Germany?
[/b]

I don't live in Nazi Germany.
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  #19  
May 22nd, 2007, 09:25 PM
Cereal Killer's Avatar Aiming for mediocrity
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Quote:
The beauty of the country that I live in (US) is that are laws are clearly defined and the potential to change the law is huge. If there is a law that the majority of people don't believe is effective, or believe to be unfair, or believe to be violating rights then they can work to change that law.

However, I believe that as a citizen of this country who does participate in every opportunity to voice my opinion on what should be done both politically and legally that if I am in the minority I should follow the laws and continue to work to change them. Vigilantism - even if it's a passive form - hurts no one but the law breaker. It's an ineffective way of promoting change.

I also believe that it is important to understand how and why certain laws are the way they are so that if absolute change is unattainable that another avenue can be pursued (enacting a new law altogether.) Right now, ignorance of the law is never an adequate defense in our country, so I do believe that anyone who wishes to promote change in any manner should educate themselves on the best way to advocate that change.[/b]
What she said.
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  #20  
May 22nd, 2007, 09:46 PM
Caeden&#39;sMama's Avatar Mega Super Mommy
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Quote:
Quote:
Quote:
I personally think all laws should be followed. If you don't agree with a law, fight to have it changed. Until then, follow it.[/b]
Ummm... Even if you lived in Nazi Germany?
[/b]

I don't live in Nazi Germany.
[/b]
So? Doesn't mean that kind of stuff couldn't happen here...
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