Disagreement Vs Dissent In America Essay

1005 words - 4 pages

In the middle of the nineteenth century bloody battles broke out all over the United States, pitting brother against brother and father against son. The causes of this war were the issues of slavery and state’s rights; but most importantly, the catalyst for the Civil War was the tension in the air cause by the dissention of the South from the North. Dissention is a radically different concept than the idea of disagreement. Had the Northern and Southern states merely disagreed about slavery and states’ rights issues, the Civil War would only be a wisp of what could have been. Disagreement leads to arguments while dissent leads to quarrels, and the distinction Boorstin makes between the two is entirely accurate.

Dissent can be caused by a multitude of factors. One may dissent from the majority because their pride has been hurt, because communication broke down, or because they simply refuse to listen to any other view but their own. Dissention is dangerous because it is primarily a factor of pride, something that lies very close to the heart of any individual. There are times, however, when dissention may be caused by something else. When rhetorical communication breaks down, dissention can and will occur. Misunderstandings are delicate situations, and must be resolved accordingly. For instance, the Dallas City Commissioner John Wiley Price recently dissented from a citizen, telling the citizen and others in the court room to “go to hell!” The citizen Price had the altercation with addressed Price as “Chief Mullah” in an attempt to be a smart aleck. However, the citizen pronounced “mullah” (the name for an Islamic cardinal) as “moolah,” a highly offensive racial slur. Price does not tolerate racial slurs, and thus the screaming match occurred, displaying Price in a horrible light and possibly ruining his political career. The dissent, whether it be from pride or miscommunication, has alarming implications. Had Price merely disagreed with the citizen; he could have calmly informed the citizen he does not tolerate such language, or asked him to leave the court room. This was not the case. Price dissented with the citizen and placed himself in the minority by losing his composure. Had he not let his pride get in the way of his job, the quarrel Price created would have been avoided completely. And although the situation was a miscommunication, pride inevitably affected the outcome of the conflict. Had Price not been so prideful, the situation would have merely blown over: although still a breakdown in communication, it would not have caused a huge rift between Price and the public. The pride that caused this dissent is an infection that spreads rapidly to the brain – once it’s started, it cannot be stopped. A disagreement, however, is in no way infectious. When two persons have a disagreement, it is a differing in opinion that can be talked about calmly: there is no pride to blind them. The factor of pride is what makes dissent and disagreement ...

Find Another Essay On Disagreement vs Dissent in America

Hamiltonianism vs Jeffersonianism. America during the late 18th century- the fate of country lay in the hands of two men

2096 words - 8 pages America during the late 18th century was a time of radical changes. America was justthen breaking its ties with a forceful British rule. The condition of the country was tryingenough to the fortitude and constancy of the patriots. How remarkable to consider for amoment, that the fate of this great country lay in the hands of men.In this group of fashioned leaders were two names, not the oldest or most distinguished inthe history of America, but

Civil Disobedience - A public right or a crime?

2142 words - 9 pages express their disagreement in order to re-legitimize the Government? Is dissent or protest justifiable to a return to a free society and its inherent goodness and progress? These are issues which have been debated by many philosophers and thinkers in history.Hobbes, for example allows for resistance to society, if a person who did no do so would be 'imperiled' and at risk of death. The state had not provided protection for the protection of the

Should governments tolerate the actions of dissident groups?

1831 words - 7 pages of democracy that renders intolerance to the actions of dissident groups (that obey the law) intolerable - it is through dissent that the government is made aware of the people's wishes and their disagreement with governmental policy. Most democracies regard dissent as an important part of government. Therefore, it should be tolerated.Dissent has its place in dictatorships as well. Although dictatorships operate as police states, they can find

Impacts of the Vietnam War on Australian Society

1758 words - 7 pages a Viet Cong attack, and were inflicted by loosing a few casualties.1969 saw the "Vietnamisation" of the war, in which America withdrew from Vietnam and South Vietnam took a much larger role in the war, making up for the lost troops. It was North Vs south, no allies.From 1970-1972 Australian troops numbers decreased until the last battalion left Nui Dat on 7 November.Overall, Australia's commitment to the war effort was 50,000 Australians. 520

Write a executive summary on Enron leadership and its failure.

795 words - 3 pages story about the leadership; the other half hides below the surface. While the company openly touted the value system of Respect, Integrity, Communication and Excellence (RISE), the leaders of the company failed to integrate these core values into their operations. In fact the leaders disapproved any messages of dissent and were dismissive of critics. They encouraged a "yes man" culture that throttled dissent and disagreement. "Enron had a

Analysis of four types of conflict in John Steinbeck's "The Grapes of Wrath", man versus man, man versus nature, man versus society, and man versus himself.

1487 words - 6 pages with nature and the elements. The man vs. man conflict is usually just a more specific example of one of the other areas of conflict.The most prevalent conflict in the novel is man vs. society. The first example is the Joads being forced off their land in Oklahoma. The corporations are becoming bigger in America, and are driving all the small farmers off of their land. "One man on a tractor can take the place of twelve or fourteen families

The Eighth Amendment

1015 words - 4 pages by the Supreme Court’s rulings in the case of Gregg vs. Georgia, in 1976. In this case the court upheld the constitutionality of the death penalty, defending statutes that guide judges and juries in the decision to issue the death sentence. The Court did, however, state that the mandatory use of the death penalty would be prohibited under the Eighth Amendment as cruel and unusual punishment. The defendant in this case

Is Totalitarianism an essentially Enlightenment phenomenon? This essay will argue that it is an economic and political model born from the modern European experience using Soviet model as an example.

2377 words - 10 pages liable to fall under the power of one member. This led to the empowerment of those who were skilled at manipulating the committee system, such as Joseph Stalin. As the Party is set up as the voice of the people, and determines the direction of the state and state policy on the basis of this 'general will' principle, any dissent or disagreement is not acceptable. A strong majority system, such as utilised in liberal democratic systems, is not enough

Democratic governments- do they really serve the interests of the people?

682 words - 3 pages , and judge what is in their own best interests. He accepts that America is not yet democratic enough, but that the electorate does have the power to make choices. He states that he believes that the government does not restrict the press, 'big government' does not control tax laws and the education system are free, with universities openly giving opportunity for freedom of expression and dissent (Hook). While elections are an essential part

Alien And Sedition Acts

980 words - 4 pages were seldom view without bias, and quick accusations of right and wrong began as the major split between ideals formed. Parties were forming, and every step of the process made the groups stronger and more narrow minded, as affiliation spread from influencing intellectual and political aspects to playing a part in the social world as well. The proposed Alien and Sedition Acts appeared to be a simple bill, but considering the growing dissent


1933 words - 8 pages In 1965, at a time of racial discrimination in America and the emergence of a strong Civil Rights Movement, congress enacted the Voting Rights Act (VRA), which prohibits discrimination in voting. Congress could not end racial discrimination in voting by suing one jurisdiction, state, etc. at a time. Rather, Congress passed Section 5 of the VRA, which required states and local governments with a history of racially discriminating voting practices

Similar Essays

Dissent Vs. Disagreement Essay

690 words - 3 pages Dissent vs. Disagreement A teenager comes home late from a party to find her mother waiting quietly at the doorstep. The mother points at the clock and asks where on earth her daughter had been all night. The teenager skulked out of the room. Mom had to stay firm, for it was two hours past curfew and her daughter never called. The punishment was simple: one week without a car. But the teenager raged about the house, hurling insults at her

Prohibition In America: The Rights Of Individuals Vs. The Responsibilities Of A Nation

1940 words - 8 pages PROHIBITION IN AMERICA The Rights of Individuals vs. the Responsibilities of a Nation   "The 18th Amendment to the United States Constitution prohibited the manufacture, sale, transport, import, or export of alcoholic beverages” . This historical, yet short era, known as “Prohibition”, set an example that is still referred to today. As people scrambled all around the country trying to illegally obtain alcohol, the country was once again in a

Once Upon A Time In America Vs. Goodfellas

1792 words - 7 pages In Scorsese's GoodFellas and Leone's Once Upon a Time in America, the youth are ironically glamorized as underclass gangsters. Throughout both movies, the young teenaged boys attempt to create lives similar to those of their gangster heroes. During the course of their struggles they are forced to kill and steal and some of their own friends are killed in the process. They do all of this in order to achieve the "high class" life that they

Centralization Vs. Decentralization In America. Federalism. Is Most Of The Power Of America Given To The States, Or To The National Government?

551 words - 2 pages started with a decentralized government. It made sure to leave almost no power to the central government. In fact, one article says states are supreme within their borders over government rule. The national government could only coordinate, not control. Another problem with the Articles of Confederation was that the national government had no power to tax the states, which would've lead to many problems with future technology. The Articles of