The Three Jolly Bargemen & Civil Disobedience


The Three Jolly Bargemen scene was a tad bit disturbing to me.  Not for the obvious reason, of who is the stranger, but because Pip was in a pub.  Now, I have never really experienced the whole pub scene, so please correct me if I’m wrong.  Isn’t a pub just a bar?  Why is a child in a bar?  I wouldn’t take my son to a bar and have a round with anyone but then again I don’t drink myself.  I have never seen the attraction of alcohol and being drunk seems like a pretty stupid excuse for being sick the next day.

The stranger and the prisoner are one in the same.  I have never read the book but it is so.  Everything points to that and I believe Pip is about to be thanked handsomely for his help.  The money he gives Pip is his way of saying “Thank you for feeding me”.  Although Pip risked being caught as a thief, he still did a good deed in this man’s eyes.  Which brings me to another thought.  Is there any situation in which breaking the law is justified?  Is there any situation where the greater good is benefited by breaking the law?

Thoreau described this as Civil Disobedience.  Gandhi and King were subscribers to this theory and we can see that there was great benefit in it.  However, on a smaller scale can breaking the law ever be justified?  I pose this question as a though provoking idea and not as something I would do myself, therefore it is nothing more than an interesting hypothesis.

Would a mother be justified in killing their child’s killer?  Could you blame her?  Wouldn’t she be doing a greater good by ridding the world of a killer?  It’s an interesting thought and one that I have debated in my mind several times.  I believe that while she may not be legally justified, she is morally justified.  I would take someone out for harming my child.  I can be the biggest softest teddy bear the world has ever known but I will be a grizzly in a heart beat when it comes to my son.  I feel as if I would be justified in these actions because my sole purpose in parenting is to protect him.  I would jump in front of a bus to save him.

Is it okay for the father of four to rob banks to feed his children?  It’s an interesting dilemma and one that actually have first hand experience with.  My sister-in-law has a dear friend that was actually robbed at gunpoint in a game store.  She was taken to the safe, where she was instructed to give all the money to this man.  Now, while he was robbing her he confessed that he was doing so to feed his family.  He had no intention of harming her and really did nothing besides scare her silly.  He let her go and even apologized for it.  Is he justified?  The economy sucks and jobs are thin on the ground.  Food stamps only go so far and there’s no guarantee you will get them.  Is this crime justified?  Would you rob someone at gunpoint to feed your family?  It’s an interesting thought and one that takes a lot of soul searching.  I believe I would.  If my son was starving, I would do anything to feed him.  That’s just honesty.  Do I think I will ever face that choice?  I pray I don’t.  But I would do just about anything to provide for him.

So where is your cut off?  What’s the one thing you absolutely could never do?  Is there anything we wouldn’t do if provoked?  We’re basically animals.  We may think ourselves above brutality but we’re not.  It’s the honest truth.  We are not above killing other humans or doing any number of evil things.  It’s just our minds that make it wrong but our instincts are to survive, and we will do what we have to in order to make that happen.

Challenge Chapters: 14 & 15


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