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17 Eye-Opening Examples of Unjust Laws That Need To Change

Unjust laws are everywhere. They affect us all in different ways, whether we realize it or not. Some unjust laws are apparent and need to be changed immediately, while others can go unnoticed for years.

Cutting Unjust laws to Fair Paper Sign with Scissors on a white background. 3d Rendering.

What Makes a Law Unjust

A law is unjust when it violates the rights that are in place in a democracy. For example, a law that permits slavery would be considered an unjust law because it violates the civil and human rights of slaves.

  • A law is just when it promotes and protects the rights (life, liberty, and property) of citizens according to a democratic society.
  • For example, an army draft would be considered a just law because it protects the right of citizens to life by promoting their service in times of war.

In other words: A Just Law benefits the general population as opposed to only some individuals or minorities; An Unjust Law benefits those who make or enforce laws at the expense of those who are forced to obey them.

The following quote from Albert Einstein sums up very well what we just said:

Unjust laws exist; shall we be content to obey them, or shall we endeavor to amend them, and obey them until we have succeeded, or shall we transgress them at once? Men generally, under such a government as this, think that they ought to wait until they have persuaded the majority to alter them. They think that, if they should resist, the remedy would be worse than the evil. But it is the fault of the government itself that the remedy is worse than the evil. It makes it worse.

Albert Einstein

How to handle Unjust Laws

This is a tricky question. I don’t know if there is an easy answer. When you’re dealing with unjust laws, it really just depends on the context of the situation.

For example, if the law was unjust because it allowed for police brutality, then one way you might cope with this is to change your behaviors and go out and protest or engage in disruptive actions like civil disobedience.

  • You could also work with policymakers to find new policy changes that make sense and can be done realistically.
  • One option would be to offer legislators information about how these types of law enforcement practices impact people’s lives and make them feel unsafe.

The list of Unjust Laws that need to change

The law against selling alcohol on Sundays: No one should have the power to tell you when you can’t drink what you want!

The law about how many hours people work per week: If someone wants to work more than 40 hours each week, they should be able to do so without getting punished by their company or government!

The law that makes it illegal for women to drive cars is highly sexist and unfair to women!

The law that makes it illegal for people under the age of 18 to donate blood is exceptionally discriminatory towards young adults, who should be able to contribute if they feel up to the task.

The law against same-sex marriage: Marriage should not just be between a man and a woman; anyone who wants to commit deserves equal treatment by society as well as their government.

The restrictions on selling raw milk: Regulation has gotten out of hand when innocent individuals can’t sell or buy what they want because someone else might get sick.

Being required to pay taxes even though you don’t have any income: The government doesn’t have the right to tell you that you have to pay taxes if they aren’t going to help struggling people.

Laws against marrying your cousin: This is a personal decision and should not be legislated by anyone other than yourself!

Not being allowed to keep chickens in your backyard: Chickens don’t harm society or anything else, so why would it matter how many of them someone owns?

More Unjust Laws Examples

Being required to get an ID card when getting on an airplane: People shouldn’t be able to treat innocent individuals like criminals simply because they want peace of mind.

Your landlord telling you what colors can be used for paint inside your apartment (if you live in a rent-controlled apartment): You should be able to do what you want with your property.

The fact that there are still places on earth where slavery is legal: People shouldn’t be allowed to treat others like animals and violate their rights!

Laws prohibiting people from smoking marijuana for medical or recreational purposes: There’s no reason why individuals can’t get the help they need, so this law requires to change today!

School authorities must use specific bathroom facilities based on biological sex rather than gender identity: This is highly problematic because it targets transgender students who don’t feel safe using separate bathrooms.

Not allowing children under 12 into commercial airplanes without an adult is entirely unfair because children are not given the freedom to make decisions for themselves.

Laws against paying employees with cryptocurrency: The government should not say how people choose to pay their workers!

Not allowing certain types of service animals on commercial airplanes: People who need assistance from a trained animal shouldn’t be discriminated against, especially when it comes to getting the help they desperately need while traveling.


In conclusion, we hope that by educating ourselves about unjust laws and their origins, we can create a more just society. If you’re interested in learning how these injustices affect people from different backgrounds or if you want to help support organizations working towards achieving justice, the links below will provide some good resources for doing so:

Viable Outreach | Activism for the 99%