not take something lying down

not take (something) lying down

To refuse to accept or endure something without struggle, resistance, or opposition. You can't take kind of defiance from a subordinate lying down if you want other people in the office to respect you. The workers decided that they wouldn't take the proposed pay cuts lying down.
See also: down, lying, not, take

not take something lying down

COMMON If something bad is happening and you say that you will not take it lying down, you mean that you will complain about it or fight against it. It is clear that he means to push everyone out who does not agree with him, and I for one am not going to take it lying down. They still say there's nothing wrong at all with their systems. I don't take these things lying down, so I complained several times by letter.
See also: down, lying, not, something, take