Morality and the Law

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Morality and the Law The United States likes to think of itself as a highly evolved nation and that its judicial process is one of the fairest and least corrupt in the world. That might in fact be true but it by no means makes the American judicial system perfect by any stretch of the imagination. Part of the flawed aspects of the court systems and legislative systems in America has to do with the fact that so much is open to interpretation. Atkins v. Virginia is a case which is classically controversial. Some view it as a shining example where the highest court in the land was able to rule with a sense of humanity and rightness which reflected the greater morality at stake. Others viewed it as a failure on all count and a complete absence of justice. This paper will examine the two sides of this coin, demonstrating how this case makes a huge influence on the eternal debate of the connection between morality and the law. Atkins v. Virginia, which ruled it would be a violation of the constitution to execute a mentally retarded criminal convicted of first degree murder, does indeed have a tremendous amount of bearing on the central debate between natural law theorists and legal positivists. The central contention between natural law theorists and legal positivists is as follows: natural law theorists believe in the inherent bond between the law and morality; legal positivists do not. This case demonstrates the inherent morality present within the constitution and

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