Daily Prompt: Fight the Power

(Tell us about a time when you fought authority and took a stand against “the man.” Did you win?)

You’re talking to someone who was born on Independence Day here.
Which is not to say that I automatically resist all authority, just on general principles.  I don’t.  I respect authority when it is respectable.  I follow the rules.  I try not to speed. I pay my taxes.  I brush my teeth.  I don’t always make my bed.

God’s authority is never questionable.  If God, through His Word, says I must, then I must. Period.

Where I have a little trouble is when those in authority positions expect me to never, ever question them, whether respectfully or disrespectfully.  And the more they resist my questions, the more disrespectful I feel.

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I am pleased to say that most of the authority in my life has been reasonable and acceptable.  There were times when that was not true, but those times were learning experiences and didn’t do me any lasting harm.

My first job was running a cash register in a grocery store.  I didn’t particularly like the work, but I needed the job if I was going to attend college. I’m not going to go into a lot of detail here.  Not necessary or helpful.  In summary, I was accused of taking money from the register.  Fast forward, my boss went to jail for embezzlement not too long after he accused me.  I did stand up to his “authority,” and I guess I won–the accusation against me never went anywhere, and the assistant manager was pretty sharp.  He’d been watching the boss for some time, and the situation ended well for me.

I took no particular pleasure in my boss’s downfall, because he’d tried hard to take me with him.  I guess it was because I was so new, untried, naive.  He probably figured it would be easy to shift the blame to me.

The store failed.  I don’t know how long he was in prison.  I went on with my life and did just fine. What I’m really kind of proud about in that situation is that I didn’t cower or run and hide.  I vehemently denied the accusation and called on anyone at all to check my wallet, my locker, my dorm room, and my bank account. I had nothing to hide, and I wasn’t about to let a bully back me down.

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2 thoughts on “Daily Prompt: Fight the Power

  1. Michael Kreger

    Three times at college, I threatened physical violence against bullies who were in authority over me. Three times, they backed down.

    Bullies are also cowards. I tell my kids to punch a bully in the mouth and see what happens. Ethan has needed to do this twice: once in the Christian school, and once in the public school. Both times, the bullies (who outnumbered him 3:1 and 10:1) backed down.

    One section of my workplace is the Child Care Professionals. They are horrified by my methods, but they can’t argue with the results, so they can only seethe and say how awful it all is.

    “Tell an adult,” they say. “It’s always wrong to fight,” they say.

    Yeah, that’s really helpful, when most teachers can’t be bothered to figure out the truth, and so they punish the good kid, who is only standing up for himself and who CARES about being punished, with the same punishment that the bad kid receives (and who really doesn’t care at all about being punished).

    And so our kids grow up NOT learning how to solve their own problems, unless they disobey the foolish instructions of those in authority over them, in which case they are rebels, like me. Otherwise, they learn to be weak and helpless and dependent on The Authorities.

    They learn to be slaves.

    Wonderful.

    1. I’ve been waiting to hear from you on this one. Figured I would 🙂 You are right about bullies. They are cowards and tend to run in packs so they don’t have to stand alone.

      As I said in my post, I’m thankful to say that stupid authority has been rare in my life, and when i did have to deal with it, there was no permanent harm done. You live, you learn, you grow; best-case scenario, you don’t live to repeat the stupidity.

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