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Discuss the Relationship between law and morals. Consider how far the law seeks to uphold and promote moral values.

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  • Essay length: 2092 words
  • Submitted: 13/10/2003
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AS and A Level Practical Questions

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Discuss the Relationship between law and morals. Consider how far the law seeks to uphold and promote moral values. Total marks = 30.

The relationship between law and morality is not an easy one. Moral rules and legal rules have some similarities: like all rules, according to Hart, they share a general (though not necessarily universal) habit of obedience within the society to which they apply, and a "critical reflexive attitude" (a sense of "oughtness"). Moral rules and legal rules are certainly not the same: there are some legal rules that are not moral rules and vice versa. In some cases the moral view and the legal view overlap, this will be discussed later.

There are several differences between law and morality. Firstly, in general, the law applies to everyone in society whereas morals are more of a personal opinion and can apply to individual groups of people. For example, the practice of Christianity and other denominations holds many moral views and lessons such as 'thou shalt not commit adultery' but this is not a law and does not bind society as a whole.

The law is laid down in statute and enforced

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