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Negotiating with modernity: Amish dispute resolution.

Miller, Wayne F.
June 4, 2015

Source: (2007) Ohio State Journal on Dispute Resolution. 22(2): 477-526.

The hypothetical gazebo builder, however, belongs to an Amish church, an insular Christian sect. … Although historically
this sect did not attempt negotiation or other bargaining methods with the government, during the second half
of the twentieth century, the Amish have shown a greater willingness to “negotiate with Caesar. … The local congregation,
composed of all baptized adults, enacts the community rules of discipline called the Ordnung. … After dropping
the lawsuit, Amish leadership began lobbying to gain an exemption, an effort that was as impressive as anything from K
Street. … The resolutions of the New York and Ohio conflicts, involving negotiation between the Amish, the public, and
law enforcement officials rather than court intervention, were not replicated in Michigan, Minnesota, and Pennsylvania.
… When both nonnegotiables are triggered, negotiation is limited as a dispute resolution device, and litigation may
arise, but even this depends on the particular Amish congregation or government body involved. … For the Amish, such
a process is unnecessary; the Gelassenheit requires forgiveness and nonresistance, even if the offender does not demonstrate


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