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November 2, 2016 / Congau

Break the Law

Thou shalt break the law. The law is human, and to be human is to err. That also goes for the rulers of your society and there is little reason to believe that those man-made rules that you are told to obey are always good. You are responsible for your own action and therefore only your own conscience can decide if a law is good and worth obeying. Whoever follows a bad law is morally convicted and a hundred percent law-abiding citizen may commit a lot of evil.

This is perhaps easily understood if we imagine ourselves as citizens in a horrible Nazi state. If the law commands you to kill Jews, you would hopefully refuse to obey. But the laws are not perfect even in your comparatively gentle society and only your skeptical attention can reveal them.

It is dangerous to have a blind confidence in the law, and this thoughtless respect for rules is exactly what makes apparently normal people accomplices to the atrocities of totalitarian states. But your state also commits injustice, and every time you obey without thinking, you may be guilty.

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