Justice and Law, redux

Next Monday, I’m scheduled for jury duty, which has my thoughts returning to the judiciary.

Judges are typically very strict about application of the law, regardless of any other nagging issues — like justice. And they will insist that jurors apply the law as they (the judges) instruct in reaching a verdict.

But the preference for laws has two serious ramifications. First, it reduces the courtroom to an arena where lawyers compete to see who can get which rules applied. “Justice” is reduced to a game of skill with largely arbitrary results; he who can afford the more skillful lawyer prevails. Second, the preference for a supremacy of rules at the expense of other values is an appeal to order, a preference for which biases the judicial process in favor of politically conservative values.

I am not a conservative. I am appalled by conservative values. And I will not participate in their promulgation.

Author: benfell

David Benfell holds a Ph.D. in Human Science from Saybrook University. He earned a M.A. in Speech Communication from CSU East Bay in 2009 and has studied at California Institute of Integral Studies. He is an anarchist, a vegetarian ecofeminist, a naturist, and a Taoist.

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