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  • I start from the supposition that the world is topsy-turvy, that things are all wrong,

  • that the wrong people are in jail and the wrong people are out of jail, that the wrong

  • people are in power and the wrong people are out of power, that the wealth is distributed

  • in this country and the world in such a way as not simply to require small reform but

  • to require a drastic reallocation of wealth. I start from the supposition that we don't

  • have to say too much about this because all we have to do is think about the state of

  • the world today and realize that things are all upside down.

  • If you don't think, if you just listen to TV and read scholarly things, you actually

  • begin to think that things are not so bad, or that just little things are wrong. But

  • you have to get a little detached, and then come back and look at the world, and you are

  • horrified. So we have to start from that supposition-that things are really topsy-turvy.

  • And our topic is topsy-turvy: civil disobedience. As soon as you say the topic is civil disobedience,

  • you are saying our problem is civil disobedience. That is not our problem.... Our problem is

  • civil obedience. Our problem is the numbers of people all over the world who have obeyed

  • the dictates of the leaders of their government and have gone to war, and millions have been

  • killed because of this obedience.

  • We recognize this for Nazi Germany. We know that the problem there was obedience, that

  • the people obeyed Hitler. People obeyed; that was wrong. They should have challenged, and

  • they should have resisted; and if we were only there, we would have showed them. Even

  • in Stalin's Russia we can understand that; people are obedient, all these herdlike people.

  • Remember those bad old days when people were exploited by feudalism? Everything was terrible

  • in the Middle Ages-but now we have Western civilization, the rule of law. The rule of

  • law has regularized and maximized the injustice that existed before the rule of law, that

  • is what the rule of law has done.

  • When in all the nations of the world the rule of law is the darling of the leaders and the

  • plague of the people, we ought to begin to recognize this. We have to transcend these

  • national boundaries in our thinking. Nixon and Brezhnev have much more in common with

  • one another than - we have with Nixon. J. Edgar Hoover has far more in common with the

  • head of the Soviet secret police than he has with us. It's the international dedication

  • to law and order that binds the leaders of all countries in a comradely bond. That's

  • why we are always surprised when they get together -- they smile, they shake hands,

  • they smoke cigars, they really like one another no matter what they say.

  • What we are trying to do, I assume, is really to get back to the principles and aims and

  • spirit of the Declaration of Independence. This spirit is resistance to illegitimate

  • authority and to forces that deprive people of their life and liberty and right to pursue

  • happiness, and therefore under these conditions, it urges the right to alter or abolish their

  • current form of government-and the stress had been on abolish. But to establish the

  • principles of the Declaration of Independence, we are going to need to go outside the law,

  • to stop obeying the laws that demand killing or that allocate wealth the way it has been

  • done, or that put people in jail for petty technical offenses and keep other people out

  • of jail for enormous crimes. My hope is that this kind of spirit will take place not just

  • in this country but in other countries because they all need it. People in all countries

  • need the spirit of disobedience to the state, which is not a metaphysical thing but a thing

  • of force and wealth. And we need a kind of declaration of interdependence among people

  • in all countries of the world who are striving for the same thing.

I start from the supposition that the world is topsy-turvy, that things are all wrong,

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B1 disobedience wrong people people civil jail wrong

Matt Damon on Civil Disobedience / 麥特戴蒙 講 公民不服從 - 節錄自 Howard Zinn, 1970 (中英字幕)

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    阿多賓 posted on 2014/04/18
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