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Natural and Positive Law Essay Sample

Natural and Positive Law Pages
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When it comes down to the law, you either have a Naturalist view, a Positivists view, or both. When coming down to what is the right decision as an individual or as a society, there will always be different solutions and opinions as to what is the common sense decision. As an individual going through cases such as Oka, Latimer, Kevorkian, and Freedom Riders, there is a line that one should not cross but also a line that should be questioned. Every case initiates different thoughts as to what should or should not of happened. From young, some people are taught to learn and go through life based on morality, while others are taught on the basic common sense that benefits all. Positivists are man-made laws made to bend society to the right path in learning to co-operate with one another. While Naturalists believe law should be based on what is morally right, not thinking as a society, but for every individual.

A Positivists view counts individuals as a whole, as a society. There are reasons as to why man-made laws are not made based on morals, but as to conduct societies behavior for certain cases from happening frequently. When it comes to certain cases, there is a feel for a Positivists view. One should not insist on a certain right if it only appeals to them and not including benefits to others around them, but above all every situation could be dealt with differently. For example, in the Oka case, the Aboriginals did not want their land to be shut down because they believed that it belongs to them and they do not want any harm to their land. “These trees were put up, they’re like our mothers, how would you feel if someone was raping your mother?” an Aboriginal women stated on a news broadcasting of the event. Instead of dealing with the Aboriginals, the government played with force and the Aboriginals did not agree. From there a war broke out amongst the government and the Aboriginals, the Aboriginals built up a barricade around their land and prepared with their weapons against the police, and later the military.

From a Naturalists view, there is an agreement to what the Aboriginals are fighting for, but there is a disagreement as to how the case was dealt with. The battle between the Aboriginals and the Police/Military brought an effect to the people around the dispute, an officer was shot, and Aboriginal women and children were in between the mix of aimed bullets. This is where an agreement with Positivists comes in. Which also brings in the case of the Freedom Riders, situated in the 1960s, where a group of people, black and white, would ride a bus into the “Deep South” in order to make a movement to stop segregation. Although they are fighting a cause for the right thing they should fight for it doing it underneath the Law. Meaning they should be able to fight the law with the law. As Socrates believed “one had the duty to convince state authorities through rational argument of the injustice of the law, if the attempts failed,” he believed “…one’s ultimate duty was to obey the law.”

The Freedom Riders knew the consequences of what riding a bus together would cause, meaning any bruises or injuries done to them could have been prevented. Therefore cases such as Oka and Freedom Riders could have been prevented and controlled in a different pace. In another sense, harm to another causing death intentionally is wrong. Consciously knowing what you are going to do to an individual is wrong, even if you did not mean to but one had the intention to harm in the beginning is wrong, and there is a consequence for that. There are two cases that bring that wrongness to a different point. For example in the Latimer case, situated in Canada, a man named Jacob Latimer took his disabled daughter into a car where she was locked in and breathed in poisonous gas. The father killed his daughter because he wanted her suffering to stop. Now anyone can agree no parent wants to see their own child suffer but as far as to take their life is a different scenario.

Jacob Latimer believes that what he did was not wrong but the right thing to do and that he should not be sentenced as guilty. This case is not different from another case, the Kevorkian case, situated in America, where a doctor went around doing civil disobedience basically assisting suicides. He helped the assistance of Tom Young, and taped the assisted suicide and sent it in to 60 seconds to create an aware of his duties. In the video he made sure he conjured up a contract reading it aloud to Tom Young, making sure his response was taped, Tom Young said yes. Now similar to the Latimers case, Kevorkian believed what he did was not wrong.

The man Tom Young was suffering and Kevorkian believed that he was helping him end what he can’t do by himself. From a Positivists point, that is not an agreeable reason. Should everybody go around helping other people end their lives because they say they claim they feel they should. Murder is murder, Latimer and Kevorkian are aware of what they committed but they see it has the right thing to be done. As society’s view, its wrong, Kevorkian and Latimer may be viewing their actions as morally right, but at the end of the day they ended a life of an individual who could’ve seen the next day for another year. It is not their choice.

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