The Nature Of Law: John Austin, Joseph Raz And Thomas Aquinas

1122 Words5 Pages
Throughout this paper I will identify and discuss five philosophers as well as their theories on the concept of the nature of law. The five philosophers that I will be discussing are as follows; John Austin, H.L.A. Hart, Lon Fuller, Joseph Raz and Thomas Aquinas. I will also be answering three key questions about each philosopher and their philosophy. John Austin viewed law as a legal positivism, which is a term that separates moral rules of positive law, and suggested, “Where there is law, there are patterns of commanding and obeying” (Murphy, Mark 2006, p. 17). Law starts with society therefore, without society and the people that make up our society laws would seize to exist. This idea would connect with law as a social phenomenon. Austin…show more content…
Hart felt that laws should be designated as rules instead of commands and that they accounted for the effectiveness of law in terms of primary and secondary rules. Hart depicts this belief in stating that the rules are noticeable, secondary to change as well as arbitrated to give us direction into understanding the meaning of a law. Hart’s rule could be considered illogical and inconsistent as well as slightly persuasive. An example of rules of change in our current legal system is the legal age to buy and consume alcohol. For majority of the United States the legal age to buy and drink alcoholic beverages was and is twenty-one. However, most people felt that the age should be eighteen since that is when young adults can join the service. Given today’s standards that idea would be illogical and inconsistent. The reason for that is eighteen year old individuals lack the common sense to not drink and drive. Which can be clearly seen in the media and heard in stories that involve young adults or teens and alcohol as well as motor vehicles. Lon Fuller states that his eight principles are the core of law in a sense that “they are built into the existence conditions for law since these moral principles are built into the existence conditions for law, they are internal and hence represent a conceptual connection between law and morality.” (Himma, E.) I sort of agree with that statement because not every individual sees a situation or circumstance in the same way as…show more content…
Raz feels that there is an important difference between the “brute use of force to get one’s way and the same done with a claim of right.” (Legal Philosopher Joseph Raz: An Engaging and Demanding Thinker) Raz feels that there is a right way to get something out of someone rather than demanding someone to do something. Raz further evaluates this idea by stating “if people are to act better on the reasons that apply to them by using legal norms, they must be able to grasp those legal norms apart from identifying the reasons that apply to them.” (Murphy, Mark 2006 p. 34) Raz’s view appears to be logical and consistent as well as persuasive. In my opinion people should take responsibility for their actions, not because it is the right thing to do, but because we as humans are held to a certain standard in the eyes of our peers for every choice that we

More about The Nature Of Law: John Austin, Joseph Raz And Thomas Aquinas

Open Document