Is Resisting Authoritarianism Easy?

When looking at the history of authoritarianism, it is quite. Currently, now in our country, the United States, there are many who argue that President Donald Trump engages in authoritarian politics. If you delve deep into his rhetoric and ways of commanding, depending on either your political view or moral compass, you will see the ways in which he may be capturing those authoritarianism characteristics.

Some of those characteristics listed upon Preserved Articles are:

  • Dependence on coercion and fore
  • Less importance to Rights and Liberties
  • Rulers determine all decisions

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Through our various readings, and in particular, Lui Xiaobo’s essay, “Changing the Regime by Changing the Society”, readers are given ways to resist a government with limited personal freedom. Multiple times I’ve had to see in what position I would stay if I were to go against the authoritarian regime. Xiaobo explains “China’s course of transformation into a modern, free society [as] gradual and full of twists and turn” (Xiaobo 161). In order to maintain the course and not give up despite political responses, I found three important nuggets from Xiaobo’s essay that seem to be the most efficient when dealing with an authoritarian government.

  1. Self-consciousness
  2. Rights-defense movements
  3. Respect

Self-consciousness

“Civil society remains weak, civic courage inadequate, and civic wisdom immature…”

In order to stand ground in what you believe, you must first believe in yourself. Xiaobo knows for sure that it is nearly impossible to replace the regime without a strong knowing out self. Personal independence is important to achieve personal freedom. “Bottom-up reform, which involves shifting the cultural attitude, & [persistence]” (164).

Rights-defense movements

“The nonviolent rights-defense movement does not aim to seize political power, but is committed to building a humane society wherein one can live with dignity.” (164)

Peacefully fighting against dehumanization and embracing a lifestyle of understanding and knowledge. How can you pursue “freedom in your everyday  life” as well as convey your thoughts concerning rights?

 

Respect

“Whether an insider or an outsider of the system, whether working from the top down or the bottom up, each should respect the other’s right to speak.” (165)

With both sides understanding the importance of respect, there will be a mutual consensus, allowing people to explore different avenues. How can you “improve the status of the population” without knowing how to respect others despite differences (166)?

 

The Chinese Communist Party completely gutted out the freedom of the Chinese peoples. Living in a tyrannical world of “endless self-criticism [and] public humiliation, moral drive decrease, but that didn’t stop those from going against the dictatorial government (163). Although it is noted that their consistent drive to replace the Communist regime is a gradual change, harboring those 3 things, plus various others will allow a group of people, with the same desire of freedom, to dilute, “intimidation, briber, rectification, expulsion,  prohibition, arrest, or legislation” from the government (166).

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