February 4, 2010 Who are laws supposed to protect?
The basic question in law philosophy: who are laws supposed to protect? Protect you from yourself, or protect you from others.
This is a very touchy issue because there is A LOT of gray area.
First lets examine the seat-belt law. You can get a ticket for not wearing a seat belt. Ridiculous. How can this law protect me from you? I cannot see a connection.
But lets look at another law: Denmark just outlawed partially hydrogenated oils aka trans fat. This isn’t protecting me from other people is it? So now I don’t have a choice to what I can eat? Maybe I want to fill my arteries with fat.
It makes sense though, with less trans fat consumed, people will less often (in theory of course) die of heart complications, this will most likely save a lot of money. This in a way makes sense.
But I don’t need a law to tell me that partially hydrogenated oils will clog my arteries. I have common sense, but deep fried cheese curds looks good.
It almost seems that Denmark is acting in the best interest (common sense) in of their citizens. Which is what a government should do, but if you allow a government to act in your best interest, you can just kiss your common sense good bye. If there is no need to think about it because a government will baby you like eggs (and they should, citizens who stay alive longer pay more taxes), you won’t have any.
The point I want to make is that yes, outlawing the trans fat, isn’t that bad of a thing but having a government decide what is good or bad for you is taking away freewill. For instance: Cigarettes are bad, people KNOW it, but they still ENJOY it.
I am all about protecting life, I always wear a seat belt, and anyone who rides in my car will wear a seat belt. My common sense protects me from me, not others. Driving drunk is illegal because you can injure and in many cases kill other innocent people. This is a good law, because it protects people from other people. Driving drunk is stupid. If you kill yourself driving drunk, I’m sorry for the lack of sympathy, but you deserve it. It’s blunt, but how horrible is it for someone to innocently DIE over some stupid idiot who has spends his days drinking at the local pub to a drool and the lack of common sense in this persons brain says, “George ya drunk, lets get ya home. Hop in yer chevy and keep it cool.”
I am ashamed of it, but I will admit I have driven drunk before, I never will again because I can see how real the consequences are. I wouldn’t do this argument justice if I leave myself out of this, so: I WAS AN IDIOT, AND SELFISH. I will always feel guilty of this and I am sorry I did.
In conclusion, my opinion is release all information to the public and let them choose for themselves. By giving citizens complete freewill on whether to This isn’t without its exceptions either. I believe all should be designed to protect people from other people, not people from themsevles. I feel this post is missing some pieces, I really don’t have that strong of an argument so comments are most appreciated. Please comment on your thoughts on this issue of laws. themsevle s