Disobeying Authority: The Key To Human Progress

By Jackson Parker| United States

Progress through human history has been a battle against nature, inefficiency, and man itself. The most daunting innovation is progressing against fellow individuals and removing the power they hold over another. Some of the most famous people in American history have been innovators in the field of progress against another man; George Washington and Martin Luther King leading the charge against “the man.” These and many other brave souls’ largest asset in their achievements has been their disobedience to oppressive states and groups. Disobedience is the most powerful tool for fighting the evil of man and progressing humanity forward.

An Irish poet from the 19th Century named Oscar Wilde declared,

“Disobedience, in the eyes of anyone who has read history in man’s original virtue. It is through disobedience that progress is made, through disobedience and through rebellion.”

Wilde’s claims are entirely based on historical observations with numerous examples of disobedience and rebellion leading to prosperity for the people. Gandhi’s protests in the British controlled territory of India freed the people from imperial rule and let the Indian people progress in their own direction. The French revolution allowed the French people to push past the limits of what the tyrannical king imposed. The aforementioned George Washington and Martin Luther King have set America up to be the most powerful nation of its time. Allowing the American people to decide their own path towards freedom and towards prosperity, George Washington is remembered as a hero. Likewise, Martin Luther King has also helped free a large portion of the population from the other. His “I Have A Dream” speech still echoes through the nation today with its messages of resisting oppression. The oppression Martin Luther broke free from allowed minorities to become great businessmen who have driven change in this world today.

Many will cite inventors and businessmen to be the biggest innovators in history, the evidence that political innovation via disobedience is the most powerful source of progress. The invention of the steamboat, medicine, and computers alike have greatly benefited humanity but would have been completely impossible if the barrier of man oppressing man was not lifted. The barrier of oppression stops all other mechanical or otherwise inventions from benefiting the people. If one movement can destroy the dam blocking the river of progress, that said movement should be deemed the most powerful tool humanity can use. Disobedience of authority has proven time and time again that it is able to crush the blockage of progress and be one of the most valuable human traits.

With disobedience as the battering ram that allows humans to breach the walls of oppression humans can move towards a better tomorrow for us all. Without disobedience, the modern technological innovations that we take for granted today would be few and far between. With the river of progress pushing the boat of humanity downstream, the people of the world will rejoice when disobedience allows the river to push past each blockage. The strides disobedience have made have set up the world to allow people to flourish.

Image from Business Insider.