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Name Instructor Task Date Journal Resistance to Civil Government is an essay written by an American philosopher Henry David Thoreau. The treatise by Thoreau was prompted by the debate on issues regarding slavery and the Mexican-American war between 1846 and 1848 (Meltzer 77). Thoreau encouraged the citizens to oppose the government by way of avoiding taxation since he was convinced that the said government supported injustices (Bloom 1). The essay was a derivative of a speech by Thoreau, which addressed slavery and the Mexican-American war. Slavery was commonplace in the United States during the late 1840s. Despite the increased resistance, slavery increased, and injustices against slaves became extreme (Meltzer 65). These injustices motivated reformers to resist the government through civil disobedience acts, such as the refusal to pay taxes (Meltzer 84). Motivated by the disgust with slavery and war, Thoreau wrote a speech about the two injustices, which later became an essay titled Resistance to Civil Government (Bloom 6). In the essay, Thoreau advocated for rebellion against the government. He urged the citizens to oppose taxation since the taxes supported the government’s actions on slavery (Bloom 6). As noted previously, the Mexican-American War also motivated Thoreau to write the essay. The United States sparked war with Mexico out of the need to expand her territory (Meltzer 77). Thoreau considered the war as akin to slavery. He viewed the idea of territorial expansion as unjust, impulsive, and an act of arrogance. Thoreau argued that the government had been using tax money to finance the war and, therefore, it was pointless to pay taxes in

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