Essay on Relationship Between Law and Morality

1268 Words6 Pages
In this essay I intend to discuss the relationship between law and morality through the perspectives of legal philosophers, I will provide a brief explanation of law, and what does law intend to achieve in the society. When discussing the relationship between law and morality I will consider the distinction between the theory of natural law and legal positivism and how these two theories influence each other and whether there is a legal or moral duty for the society to obey the law.

Legal philosophers have tried to provide a brief explanation for the meaning of law; however their definitions have been vague and ambiguous. John Austin explained law as ‘something which is man-made and separate from morality and justice, furthermore provided
…show more content…
Law also provide facilities for people to make their own arrangements, law protect and facilitate different arrangements between people, and law settles disputes about what law is and whether a certain conduct conflicts with legal rules. It aims to create laws that are predictable, that are able to be easily analysed and understandable by the general society.

Morality is what the society regard as right and wrong which is highly subjective, some legal philosophers believe that there is a certain moral standard which human laws must contain. Chapter 2 in The Constitution of the Republic of South Africa, 1996 which is the Bill of Rights contains moral values which the country is based. Section 1 of the Constitution provides that South Africa is an independent sovereign, democratic state which was based on following values:
 ‘Human dignity, achievement of equality and advancement of human rights and freedom,
 Non racialism and non sexism.’
South African Constitution is entrenched with moral standards in the Bill of Rights, these is also noted in the case of S v Makwanyane where the court declared death penalty unconstitutional based on that it conflict on the right to life , human dignity and right not to inflict bodily harm. Natural law dictates and limits the scope in which positive lawyers can enact and enforce the law, as we note in
Get Access