Law Assignment - Moral and Values

Added on - Oct 2019

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Introduction-Law is a means to express, manipulate and enforce moral codes[ CITATION Nad09 \l 1033 ]the result of which, the law mustattempt to keep up with the ever changing attitudes and morals. As an instrument of social change, effective laws have alwaysaddressed the ever changing societal values in a welfare state, while some others have been treated as bad laws. The assignmentanalyses the extent to which the legal pronouncement and legislations have had influence on the progression of the society’s morals,values and attitudes.Influence of law on moral normsMoral norms are expressed as rules and principles that the society has agreed upon for the benefit of the society, and are sustainedand shaped by sources such as family, peers’ media etc. Legislations touching upon these moral norms or moral judgements havebeen instrumental in influencing moral beliefs. For e.g.: The religious and philosophical belief states that the institution of marriageshould be only between a man and a woman. The government by passing The Marriage (same sex couples) Act,[ CITATIONgov14 \l 1033 ]believes that opening of marriage to all couples ensures mutual respect and makes a society a fairer and aninclusive on. Post the passing of the law, the government has been working hard towards ensuring that couples wishing to convert theircivil partnership into marriage and to change legal gender while remaining married.This goes to suggest that, although this legislation has proved to be in substantial deviation to the traditional theory of marriage, it isbeing gradually accepted that everybody should have same legal rights regardless of sexual orientation. Statistics also shows thataround 60% of American population support same sex marriage in 2015 (up from about 37% in 2006 and up from 55% in 2014)[ CITATION McC15 \l 1033 ]Similarly, judgements of the courts have had considerable impact on moulding social attitudes. In the case of R v R(1991), thedefendant was charged with attempted rape during the time that the couple were staying separately. The House of Lords, while holdingthat the rape within marriage is a crime, also stated that the common law “ is capable of evolving in the light of changing social,economic and cultural developments”. It was held that apart from property matters, one of the most important changes in marriageincludes “partnership of equals and no longer in which the wife is a subservient chattel”.[ CITATION Hel03 \l 1033 ]Ajudgement with a strong message such as this have been instrumental in changing social attitudes and maintaining gender equality.The result of such positive legislations has strongly motivated the people to adhere and affirm their beliefs based on the judgementspronounced by the courts from time to time. In order, to consistently change as per time, the dynamic nature of the law should reflectacceptability of the changing societal norms and values while also attempting to address such issues from time to time. Failure to do socan render such legislations as bad laws and therefore an outdated one.NegativesAbsence to adhere to the changing times and failing to address situations with due regard to the group customs and traditions are someof the reasons that can render a law to become unpopular.Conclusion:Reflective Log:The study of this assignment included wide analysis of the impact of the legislations and laws on the societal values, morals andattitudes. Since, the topic was wide, yet general in nature, I made a quick and rational mental assessment of how, when and what arethe legislations have impacted in a positive way and in a negative manner. I therefore decided on highlighting one two or three subjects,which included family life, marriage and society in general.
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