The Need for Law Essay

767 WordsSep 7, 20144 Pages
Mr. Jones, having murdered his wife, was burying her in the garden one night, when his neighbour, hearing the noise, asked him what he was doing. "Just burying the cat," said Mr. Jones. "Funny sort of time to bury a cat," said the neighbour. "Funny sort of cat," said Mr. Jones. Now it is obvious to everyone that, in a community such as the one in which we live, some kind of law is necessary to try to prevent people like Mr. Jones from killing their wives. When the world was at a very primitive stage, there was no such law, and, if a man chose to kill his wife or if a woman succeeded in killing her husband, that was their own business and no one l interfered officially. But, for a very long time now, members of every community have made laws for themselves in self-protection. Otherwise it would have meant that the stronger man could have done what he liked with the weaker, and bad men could have joined together and terrorized the whole neighbourhood. If it were not for the law, you could not go out in broad daylight without the fear of being kidnapped, robbed or murdered. There are far, far more good people in the world than bad, but there are enough of the bad to make law necessary in the interests of everyone. There is no difficulty in understanding this but it is just as important to understand that law is not necessary just because there are bad people in the world. If we were all as good as we ought to be, laws would still be necessary. If we never told lies, never took anything that didn't belong to us, never omitted to do anything that we ought to do and never did anything that we ought not to do, we should still require a set of rules of behaviour, in other words laws, to enable us to live in any kind of satisfactory state. How is one good man in a motor-car to pass another good man also in a motor-car coming in the opposite direction, unless there is

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