December 09, 2016

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Law and Justice

Myint Win Thein

Law is one thing and justice is another. No-one should mistake the former for the latter. Justice means fairness in dealing with people, while law means rules, or the whole system of such rules, usually made by a government, that are used to guide the way in which a society behaves, according to the Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary.
In the history of mankind, people always demand justice. Instead, people always get one law after another or the amendment of one law after another. The problem lies in the fact that not all laws reflect justice. Laws are always enacted by a government or the ruling class in their own interest. Justice is meant for the entire society and it is universal. It is a concept accepted by the society as a whole. It is not what the ruling class thinks is right. Sometimes, the ruling class mistakes laws for justice. They think that every law must be abided by everyone and everyone must avoid anything that is against the law. They take action against anyone who breaches a certain law or laws.
That is why ordinary people always demand justice while intellectuals are always talking about laws. On the other hand, a law will not be always perfect without amendments. It will have to be amended in accordance with the time and circumstance. Therefore, it is important that all laws should reflect justice, because exercising or upholding old laws will not necessarily fit in a new circumstance. Parliaments have a very important role in amending or abolishing laws that are out-dated or that cannot truly represent justice.

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