An unjust law, is no law at all
Martin Luther King Jr.
“An unjust law is no law at all” is a famous quote by Martin Luther King Jr., a prominent civil rights leader and activist in the United States. The quote is from his “Letter from Birmingham Jail,” which he wrote in response to criticism from white clergymen who disagreed with his methods of nonviolent resistance to racial segregation.
In his letter, King argued that not all laws are just, and that individuals have a moral obligation to resist unjust laws through civil disobedience. He wrote, “A just law is a man-made code that squares with the moral law or the law of God. An unjust law is a code that is out of harmony with the moral law.”
King went on to argue that it is not only the right, but the duty of individuals to disobey unjust laws. He wrote, “One has not only a legal but a moral responsibility to obey just laws. Conversely, one has a moral responsibility to disobey unjust laws.”
King’s quote has become a rallying cry for social justice movements around the world, emphasizing the importance of individual conscience and moral responsibility in the face of unjust laws and systems.
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