Rule of Law

Rule of Law vs Law and Order

Rule of Law Defined

Here’s what Rachel Kleinfeld says:

“Definitions of the rule of law fall into two categories:

(1) those that emphasize the ends that the rule of law is intended to serve within society (such as upholding law and order, or providing predictable and efficient judgments), and (2) those that highlight the institutional attributes believed necessary to actuate the rule of law (such as comprehensive laws, well-functioning courts, and trained law enforcement agencies). For practical and historical reasons, legal scholars and philosophers have favoured the first type of definition.”

Rule of Law Confused

You will probably find in your work that ‘rule of law’ is often seen as being the same as ‘law and order’.  In fact, in some countries, that is the standard translation. So if when you advocate for strengthening the rule of law, be sure you know what your audience are thinking (and what your interpreter/translator is saying).  You might be thinking that, broadly speaking, it captures the idea that ‘no one is above the law’.  Your audience might be thinking that you agree with a repressive government that the police should crack down on dissenters.

For more from Rachel Kleinfeld, read here.  Wikipedia is helpful.  Read here.

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