But in this case, it is right that she surrender the money. For instance, although the oath one takes upon entering the armed forces does appear to generate moral requirements in regard to the oath’s contents, it ordinarily binds only as long as one is serving. In making consent all but unavoidable, Locke deprives it of its moral significance. Does not leaving the country mean you consent to living under its laws, or do you not have the money to leave? Clearly, if one is prevented from leaving a given territory, remaining in it cannot constitute consent. (8)    This is a summary of the discussion in Chapters 12 & 13 of The Authority of Law, ibid. This requirement is generally supported by coercion, while those who do not obey are subject to sanctions. The UCMJ actually protects the soldier in this situation as he/she has a moral and legal obligation to the Constitution and not to obey unlawful orders and the people who issue them. Being stopped by police is a stressful experience that can go bad quickly. In departing from the voluntarism of consent theory, this position has the considerable advantage of being able to bind most or all citizens, regardless of actions they may or may not have performed. As Simmons argues, failure to act may communicate consent; tacit consent differs from express consent not because it is not communicated but in the manner through which it is communicated. They have reasons to comply with the law and they have obligations to comply with the law because of the bad things that would happen to them and to their families if they don't comply with the law, if they don't do what the law says. If staying in one’s country is to ground moral requirements to obey the law, in this case lack of action must constitute consent. He also breaks with Locke in regard to tacit consent, claiming that, because of the nature of existing societies, most people should not be viewed as having consented. Even some of the keenest law students will think they are justified in ignoring the occasional law in a situation that won’t have any effect on anybody, or follow the law for reasons other than simply because ‘that is the law’. The names OXFORD ROYALE and ROYALE INTERNATIONAL EDUCATION are (2)    Raz, The Authority of Law (Oxford University Press, 2011, 2nd edn) company registered in England as company number 6045196, registered office at 14 King Government is required for the good of society and so should be obeyed, as long as it promotes this end. The moral obligation to obey the law, or as it is generally called, political obligation, is a moral requirement to obey the laws of one’s country. The most pernicious laws, and therefore those which are most opposed to the will of God, have been and are continually enforced as laws by judicial tribunals. 1 Obligation to Obey the Law: A Study of the Death of Socrates, by Anthony D'Amato*, 49 Southern California Law Review 1079-1108 (1976) Abstract: Do we have an obligation to obey any law, no matter how unjust or evil, provided only that it is in fact a valid rule of the legal system in which we happen to be physically located? Does it really matter if everyone ignores traffic lights on empty roads at 3am? International refugee and international human rights law relies heavily on attempting to embarrass or pressure a state to comply with their international legal obligations. Legal duty: The obligations people have put upon them by the law. An oath of allegiance to the government and/or Constitution could be part of the process. Thus Beran’s proposal is unlikely to be acceptable, as it not only forces individuals to emigrate but has the additional disadvantage of forcing them to live in a dissenter’s territory. To use the words of Ronald Dworkin: “A hypothetical contract is not simply a pale form of an actual contract; it is no contract at all” (Dworkin 1977: 151). When the limitations are violated, people have strong rights of resistance, including resistance by single individuals when they believe “the Cause of sufficient moment” (§ 168). There are similar problems with other actions that have been taken to constitute consent. This what is known as ethical legalism. First, the theory should be general; that is, it should explain the obligations of all or almost all citizens. Rather, if conditions in one’s country are such that one would consent to obey the laws if given the opportunity, then this hypothetical consent could ground moral requirements to obey the law. However, this all happens at a level of thinking about moral and practical reasons for obedience rather than taking the law at face value – even where you decide to generally do as the law says you have half an eye on what each law is trying to achieve (8). Perhaps, as indicated below, she would consent if given the opportunity, but this does not mean that she has actually bound herself to obey its laws through an act of consent. But one can move to another country only if another is willing to take one in. @*/false; if (!IE) { return; } if (document.compatMode && document.compatMode == 'BackCompat') { if (document.getElementById("af-form-876625274")) { document.getElementById("af-form-876625274").className = 'af-form af-quirksMode'; } if (document.getElementById("af-body-876625274")) { document.getElementById("af-body-876625274").className = "af-body inline af-quirksMode"; } if (document.getElementById("af-header-876625274")) { document.getElementById("af-header-876625274").className = "af-header af-quirksMode"; } if (document.getElementById("af-footer-876625274")) { document.getElementById("af-footer-876625274").className = "af-footer af-quirksMode"; } } })(); --> The first meaning of law is the things government requires us to do, like laws against speeding, murdering, denying insurance coverage for pre-existing conditions, etc. –          We could instead think about the consequences of not obeying the law; Hobbes’s argument that we may end up in a state of anarchy. In spite of this and other problems, Locke’s view of consent is probably the standard account in the literature and—directly or indirectly—has influenced how many people think about political obligations. The company contracts with institutions, including the University of Now, even though we still defend the moral laws of the Old Testament, we have to keep in mind that Jesus fulfilled it all. About the Author Samantha Love read Law at Merton College, Oxford, and is currently following the BCL course. –          Another grounding for a general duty is that we should support just institutions. But if states have moral obligations, there is a further question whether citizens and leaders inherit the state's moral obligations (all or some of them). 1). Moreover, as Simmons argues, much of what is precious in life cannot be taken with one: family, friends, a particular culture (1979: 99). –          By living in the state and taking the benefits of a legal system (protection of property, a free education system) we implicitly consent to follow the law. And it will determine our approach in the ‘traffic light’ style cases, though some would argue that they don’t matter. But if we examine the conditions necessary for an act of consent to create a moral requirement to obey the laws, it can be seen that these and similar acts fall short. We use cookies to ensure that we give you Does extensive knowledge of a law justify breaking it? On another level, whether there is or is not a moral obligation to obey the law, we are still subject to it. Or to put the question from another angle, do you avoid taking illegal substances because they’re dangerous for your health, expensive, often sold as part of wider criminal activity that you don’t want to support, because you don’t want to end up in jail yourself, or simply because the law says so? Of course, Bix notes that we can ask whether we have really consented to our legal systems in any meaningful way (3). How important is the fact that the law demands or bans something to you, when thinking about whether to follow that law? The most plausible action—or lack thereof—that may be taken to constitute tacit consent is staying in one’s country. If she recognizes the obligation, she will believe it is the right thing to do—although we should note that this is a prima facie moral requirement, capable of being overridden by additional moral considerations. 1). In central respects, Hume’s conclusions are similar to those of Locke. But this contention too is disputed by scholars from numerous directions. Law is not necessarily moral to positivists; whilst a Constitution may set moral limits on what kinds of laws can be passed a legal system which sets no such limits is still a working legal system with valid laws. Is this permissible? They do this in two stages—erecting a community, which then places its powers in a legislative authority. If you have any question you can ask below or enter what you are looking for! It requires hospital Emergency Departments that accept payments from Medicare to provide an appropriate medical screening examination (MSE) to anyone seeking treatment for a medical condition, regardless … But this raises a problem of its own. Of course, there is a difference between a moral obligation and what you are legally required to do or will be punished for (not) doing. Although elements of a consent theory of political obligation are present in earlier thinkers, the view receives its classic statement in John Locke’s Second Treatise of Government (1988/1690). Rather, they employ an “attitudinal” sense of consent. The assumption is that we’re talking about generally just legal systems, although of course we could have a long debate about what constitutes a just legal system. Includes being arrested, cautions, discrimination and consumer rights. However, consequentialism faces a central difficulty in grounding requirements for given individuals to obey the law.