Friday, December 30, 2005

Legally right versus morally right

"To have a right to do a thing is not at all the same as to be right in doing it."
- G. K. Chesterton

To have a right to do something means that the action is not prohobited by law.
However, all laws are created as a result of people violating what are considered to be the inherent rights of individuals. Lawmakers react to violations of society's will toward inherent rights by creating laws that are enforcable by police and courts.

There are also many actions that may be legally acceptable but are not ethically or morally right.

What Chesterton is saying, in effect, is that we should consider what we do not just in and of itself, but also how it affects others. Any legally acceptable action that harms another person is an action waiting to become the object of a new law.

Just because something is legally acceptable does not mean that it is morally right.

Bill Allin
'Turning It Around: Causes and Cures for Today's Epidemic Social Problems,' striving to make distinctions to help us make the right decisions.
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