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Thread: Logic of the justice of the law

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    Contributor Speakpigeon's Avatar
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    Logic of the justice of the law

    Using your personal sense of logic, i.e. your logical intuition, thank you to answer the following two questions.

    A) Which of the following propositions do you see as false, and which as true?
    (s1) The law is just.
    (s2) Innocent people don’t go to jail.
    (s3) If the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.
    (s4) It is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.​
    B) That being said, do you see the following proposition as valid or not valid?
    (s5) It is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail; therefore, the law is just.​
    Thanks for your answers.
    EB

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    Quote Originally Posted by Speakpigeon View Post
    Using your personal sense of logic, i.e. your logical intuition, thank you to answer the following two questions.

    A) Which of the following propositions do you see as false, and which as true?
    (s1) The law is just.
    (s2) Innocent people don’t go to jail.
    (s3) If the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.
    (s4) It is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.​
    B) That being said, do you see the following proposition as valid or not valid?
    (s5) It is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail; therefore, the law is just.​
    Thanks for your answers.
    EB
    Huh?

    If we accept (s4), the only thing that follows is that innocent people going to jail isn't in and of itself conclusive evidence that the law is unjust. It doesn't magically become evidence of the opposite. And either way, you haven't included anything about whether innocent people do go to jail in your premises.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Speakpigeon View Post
    (s1) The law is just.
    False.

    Yet, generally speaking and overall, it is. There will always be instances where a specific law is unjust or thrown together too quickly to accommodate the issues that aren’t so black and white. Although I don’t think a single instance (or even a few instances) of an unjust law warrants concluding the law is unjust, I think there’s too many circumstances where the law fails to account for exceptions.

    (s2) Innocent people don’t go to jail.
    False.

    I don’t think even an explanation is called for on that obvious falsehood.

    (s3) If the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.
    That should be an easy answer, but I’m open-minded to not getting this one correct. Although I answer with a deep breath, I’m gonna go with true.

    (s4) It is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.​
    Squeamishly, I say true. That almost tripped me up.

    B) That being said, do you see the following proposition as valid or not valid?
    (s5) It is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail; therefore, the law is just.​
    Not valid

    By the way, do you notice the semantic ambiguity—or multiple interpretations?

    It is not true that if A (the law is just), then B (innocent people don’t go to jail)
    Vs
    It is not true that (C) (if the law is just, then innocent people don’t go to jail).

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    The OP seems a bit strange. 'logic of the justice of the law' does mot seem to mean anything.

    The 'justice system' is a euphemism. Civil law and law enforcement is meant to maintain civil order. Laws can be debated over morality, as with the death penalty. The logic of laws is keeping us from being at each other's throats. Traffic laws maintain an orderly personal transit system.

    The social concept in modern democracies is equal protection under the law. The word justice in the legal system equated to fairness. Blacks being traffic stopped more than other s is an injustice, a lack of fairness. A criminal obviously guilty getting off on a technicality is an injustice, it is unfair to victims.

    The fact that obvious guilty criminals get off on technologies is not justice, but it keeps order and overall fairness by adhering to rule of law.

    It is not logical in a formal sense, it is a morality.

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    Super Moderator Bronzeage's Avatar
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    Part of the problem is we don't have a neat definition of "just." The law can be used unjustly when society prefers it. In all the countries where slavery existed, it was a completely legal practice. If a person helped a slave escape, there would be a law which puts this person in jail. All perfectly just.

    Logic and the law only work when the law, as it exists in a particular society, is seen as a closed system.

    The reason law exists as an institution is to remove the burden of having to defend oneself and property from everyone else. It takes personal or family revenge out of the hands of the individual and hands it over to a separate authority. It's real purpose is to stop the endless cycle of vengeance attacks, which results when I kill someone, and his brother kills me, so my brother kills him, and on and on. The State takes over that function and everybody has to be happy with the result, more or less.

    To apply logic and reason to the whole thing is to expect perfection from a human endeavor. We're just not that good at this sort of thing.

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    Contributor Speakpigeon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fast View Post
    By the way, do you notice the semantic ambiguity—or multiple interpretations?

    It is not true that if A (the law is just), then B (innocent people don’t go to jail)
    Not the correct interpretation.

    Quote Originally Posted by fast View Post
    Vs
    It is not true that (C) (if the law is just, then innocent people don’t go to jail).
    That's the correct interpretation.


    We can't say: (It's not true that if A), then B.

    Because "It's not true that if A" is not a proposition.

    So we may say instead: If not A, then B.

    Or, meaning something different: It's not true that (If A, then B).

    And that is always written as: It's not true that if A, then B.

    Because there's no... ambiguity.

    Thanks for pointing out the possible misunderstanding.
    EB

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    An obsession with simple syllogisms.

    Expressing in symbolic logic would raise the quality of the threads and reduce subjectivity.

    Rather than a syllogism make a logical statement offered for debate.

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    I might be branching out a bit and deviating from the parameters of the thread, but I can’t help but think that the “just” in “justice” are not as synchronous as might be thought.

    There are instances where justice has made its debute and prevailed over less preferred alternatives that neverless render imperfections that some may reason to be unjust.

    If you are a strong suspect in an awful crime, it’s not necessarily an injustice that you are temporarily held in jail, yet there are those among us with their own shades of moral outtakes that will think otherwise. It’s not perfect and maybe perhaps not just, but it can nevertheless simultaneously be a consequence of the justice system.

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    Contributor Speakpigeon's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bronzeage View Post
    Part of the problem is we don't have a neat definition of "just." The law can be used unjustly when society prefers it. In all the countries where slavery existed, it was a completely legal practice. If a person helped a slave escape, there would be a law which puts this person in jail. All perfectly just.

    Logic and the law only work when the law, as it exists in a particular society, is seen as a closed system.

    The reason law exists as an institution is to remove the burden of having to defend oneself and property from everyone else. It takes personal or family revenge out of the hands of the individual and hands it over to a separate authority. It's real purpose is to stop the endless cycle of vengeance attacks, which results when I kill someone, and his brother kills me, so my brother kills him, and on and on. The State takes over that function and everybody has to be happy with the result, more or less.

    To apply logic and reason to the whole thing is to expect perfection from a human endeavor. We're just not that good at this sort of thing.
    It's either true or false that the law is just.
    It's either true or false that innocent people don’t go to jail.
    It's either true or false that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.
    It's either true or false that it is not true that if the law is just then innocent people don't go to jail.​

    And the argument itself is either valid or not valid.​

    I would have thought we all have a view on each of these questions.

    And what you say suggests the law is not even meant to be just, and that even if it was meant to, it still wouldn't be because humans and human institutions are just not perfect things.

    Yet, you don't actually answer the two questions...
    EB

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    Quote Originally Posted by fast View Post
    I might be branching out a bit and deviating from the parameters of the thread, but I can’t help but think that the “just” in “justice” are not as synchronous as might be thought.

    There are instances where justice has made its debute and prevailed over less preferred alternatives that neverless render imperfections that some may reason to be unjust.

    If you are a strong suspect in an awful crime, it’s not necessarily an injustice that you are temporarily held in jail, yet there are those among us with their own shades of moral outtakes that will think otherwise. It’s not perfect and maybe perhaps not just, but it can nevertheless simultaneously be a consequence of the justice system.
    Usually, a law is considered just if it treats all citizens in the same way.
    EB

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