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Arts & Letters Daily

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Justice

Introduction: Terms and moral judgements

This class of terms and judgements includes the terms ‘just’, ‘fair, and ‘equitable’, as well as their antonyms ‘unjust‘, ‘unfair‘, and ‘inequitable‘. Included are also some grammatical variances of the representative term such as ‘justice‘, and ‘injustice‘ which are important and frequently used terms in moral and legal philosophy.

People judge many things to be just or unjust. They judge actions to be just when they say, ‘That was the only just thing to do’. Specific laws are frequently judged to be unjust. This applies to legal codes but not to moral codes. When a person is judged to have been punished excessively, people say that the person got an unjust punishment. Sometimes it is said of a person that ‘He received his just deserts’ which is to say that he got what he had coming, be it an object of interest or disinterest. Judges are sometimes accused of pronouncing unjust judgements. Members of a family sometimes feel that the disbursement of the family estate was unjust. Reformers frequently argue that the economic system or social system of a country is unjust to the poor. Historically churches have made a distinction between just and unjust wars. Politicians have claimed that, if elected, they will usher in the just society. Governments are sometimes accused of being unjust to certain segments of the population. Leaders of reform movements sometimes claim that their just cause warrants their interference in the orderly flow of business. Appeals are sometimes made for a just distribution of the limited resources of a nation. People sometimes say of a particular judge that he is a just person.

How to use these resources

  • Read the Dilemma … every Dilemma is focused on issues related to schools because we are all familiar with schools
  • Discuss the Dilemma
  • Consider the view that is presented … it explains and illustrates the terms and judgements used on the moral topic
  • Apply one or more Moral Principal Value Test to the Dilemma (follow the links)
  • View the Dilemma from the persective of all aspects of moral issues: duty, rights, motive, desert and justice (follow the links)
  • Follow the same procedure to discuss issues of your choice
  • Identify and plan a specific Action Plan you or your group is prepared to implement
  • Join in the conversation by leaving your comments in the blog. Click HERE.