In response to:

Should We Obey All Laws?

Ric47 Wrote: May 16, 2012 12:57 PM
I believe that those who violate the law (either actively or passively) on moral grounds have the moral obligation to accept the punishment that the law provides for its violators. Very few advocates of active or passive resistance to law seem to publically share this view – they seem to think that their self proclaimed righteousness exempts them from the penalties of the law. I despise that point of view. And I am uncertain where Williams stands on that issue.
nawlins72 Wrote: May 16, 2012 6:08 PM
"I believe that those who violate the law (either actively or passively) on moral grounds have the moral obligation to accept the punishment that the law provides for its violators."

The State will enforce it's law, this is fact. There is, however, no hypocrisy in the violator to argue that the State has no justification for it's actions. If the violation is from such a position, then the defendant has the right to make his/her case as to why it is the State that is wrong.
Steven668 Wrote: May 17, 2012 3:29 AM
Exactly so! Every defendant may plead "not guilty" and thus have his day in court. That is where the merits of the law can be discussed and adjudicated. There would be no such opportunity if the law in question were not broken. This is the reason for so-called test cases, and a large part of the logic behind civil disobedience.

Of course, all of this depends on a fair and impartial court system, which is another can of worms entirely.
Corbett_ Wrote: May 16, 2012 5:23 PM
So if there is a tyrannical law that is morally wrong, you think people should still be punished for breaking it? While the Fugitive Slave Act was morally wrong, you believe that anyone who broke that law should have been punished?

That's a strange position to take.
Sword of Light Wrote: May 16, 2012 4:26 PM
I agree with you, Ric47, insofar as that those who participate in civil disobedience should accept punishment for that disobedience as a fact of life. But if a law is immoral, isn't punishing someone for breaking it immoral as well? And if the punishment is immoral, how is the person who disobeys that law morally obligated to accept the punishment without pointing out the immorality of the punishment?
Frank156 Wrote: May 16, 2012 4:06 PM
I agree. If you're gonna talk the talk, you better walk the walk as well
insect43 Wrote: May 17, 2012 5:50 AM
Yes you may have to accept the consequences, but one can still fight tyranny by attempting to escape, go to a country with non-extradition

Let's think about whether all acts of Congress deserve our respect and obedience. Suppose Congress enacted a law -- and the Supreme Court ruled it constitutional -- requiring American families to attend church services at least three times a month. Should we obey such a law? Suppose Congress, acting under the Constitution's commerce clause, enacted a law requiring motorists to get eight hours of sleep before driving on interstate highways. Its justification might be that drowsy motorists risk highway accidents and accidents affect interstate commerce. Suppose you were a jury member during the 1850s and a free person were on trial...