Showing Page:
Law and Morality 1
Table of Contents
Introduction ...................................................................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.
Morality ...................................................................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.
The Major Themes of the Research Project .................................. Error! Bookmark not defined.
Relationship between Law and Morality ....................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.
The Difference between Law and Morality ................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.
The Concept of Euthanasia ............................................................ Error! Bookmark not defined.
Why Moral Law Relating To Euthanasia Is Suitable For In-Depth Analysis ...................... 25
Euthanasia as Murder ................................................................................................................ 26
Right to Die ............................................................................................................................... 27
Autonomy .................................................................................................................................. 28
R (Pretty) V DPP ....................................................................................................................... 29
Three Theories Dealing With Law and Morality..................................................................... 29
Liberal View, Discusses Harm To Others. John Stuart Mill 1859 ............................................ 29
Moralistic View Harm So Society Principles. Lord Devlin 1960 & R V Brown & Others ..... 32
RV Brown .............................................................................................................................. 34
Paternalistic View - Harm to Self & Others; Professor Hart 1960 “Focus On the Individual” 35
Analysis of the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals - Immanuel Kant ......................... 37
Conclusion ................................................................................................................................... 40
Bibliography ..................................................................................... Error! Bookmark not defined.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 2
The Relationship between Law and Morality
The Concept of Law refers to the body of rules of conduct in the society of a
binding legal force and effect, prescribed, recognized, and enforced by the supreme authority.
The Law acts as a glue that binds a specific community by imposing penalties on the recidivists.
The Law is always enacted by the supreme body in a particular nation and the enactment without
any powers renders the law void. In the UK, the parliament is bestowed with authorities to enact
laws and ensure the protection of human rights.
This makes Law the body of rules backed by
The citizens of a specific country cannot merely infringe the provisions of the Law as this
amounts to the punishment. Article 2 of the European Convention of Human Rights provides for
the right to life and shall be protected by the Law. It extends that no one shall be dispossessed of
his life deliberately.
If the debtor raises the defense of receiving the indebtedness in the money
in good faith, then the debtor can be given little time to settle the debts without being jailed. The
UK parliament as the lawmaking body established the Supreme Court as the last appellate court
Alexander Horne, & Vaughe, Miller, (2014). Parliamentary Sovereignty and the European
Convention on Human Rights. Retrieved from
European Convention of Human Rights. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 3
in regards to any suits.
For this matter, the Supreme Court and its primary functions are to
interpret that Law and protect the rights of the citizens. The judges are always vigilant in making
their decisions by considering the provisions of the European Convention on Human Rights.
The legal system as a body of command must involve a network of rules.
The essence of
being ruled is not enough to differentiate a judicial order from any other social institution which
employs the standards of justification. Hart, a philosopher of Law, recognized that the unique
structure of the legal system could not comprise in its being merely a mere system of rules.
Accordingly, to account for the distinguishing features of the legal system, Hart introduced
several additional elements into his examination.
The first addition is the affirmation that Law is
the unification of two distinct types of rules and Hart termed them the primary and secondary
elements. Also, provisions of the central type deal with the actions involving the physical
movement or the changes. In the more profound highlight, the second type of rules specifies how
the laws of the first type are to be formulated, interpreted, applied, amended, and abolished. The
first rules ensure the regulation of the behaviour whereas the secondary controls are responsible
for regulating or informing and coordinating other laws.
Byron, Karemba, (2018, August 7). Brexit, the separation of powers and the role of the
Supreme Court. Retrieved from
Aiken, Julian, (n.d.). Hart, Austin, and the Concept of a Legal System: The Primacy of
Sanctions. Yale Law Journal, 84(3), 583-607. Retrieved from
John, Austin. (1832). The Province of Jurisprudence Determined (John Austin) | Natural Law,
Natural Rights, and American Constitutionalism. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 4
According to John Austin, in his submission in the positivistic school of view, the Law is
a set of rules that govern a community. They are designed by those in the top authorities to help
them rule their subordinates. He added that the Law refers to the mechanism through which the
top authorities communicate their needs to the community by providing sanctions for the
offences committed by their subordinates. This implies that the Law is the rule that is designed
by humans to suit their needs. Austin views the Law as the mere expression of a desire of the
sovereign people in a particular state.
For instance, the sovereign may say that it would prefer
their subordinates to do something that may or may not benefit the people doing such a job. The
state may incorporate the issue such as the payment of taxes by starting from a specified date.
Interestingly, these desires are backed up by the credible use of threat or force or, and there is
always assured of punishment for those who oppose the move.
The Law depends upon the wishes of the political authority as the sovereign body. This
implies that every rule that emerges as originating from the sovereign becomes a command.
such, Law is a variety of commands that are designed by the monarch. For instance, a person of
the higher rank in the community who proposes to do or refrain from something expresses their
intimation, and such wish becomes a command. In this regard, the subordinates are obligated to
adhere to such authorities.
John, Austin (1832). The Province of Jurisprudence Determined (John Austin) | Natural Law,
Natural Rights, and American Constitutionalism. Retrieved from
Robert, B. Dove (2000). Enactment of a Law - Learn About the Legislative Process Resources.
Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 5
Every legal system must provide for the penalties for the crimes that such Law prohibits
in a particular country. The sanction is an evil that will be incurred if the set of commands or the
rules are disobeyed and encompasses how the powers or duties are enforced. As such, the notion
of sanction is broader than punishment. The reward for submitting to the command can hardly be
called the penalty.
The control embraces issues such as the wish or desire perceived by the
rational being to another sensible person who can do or forbears the commanded individuals.
Besides, the evil to advance from the former to be experienced by the latter in case of
noncompliance. Also, the intimidation or expression of the will by the words. This implies that
the command relates to the rules or Law that obliges people generally to forbearances. Law as a
command obligates persons to a course of conduct, and the penalties are associated with
deterring resistance to meet such manner. It requires sense and can only emanate from the
determinable source or the author. As such, the body of command proceeds from the superiors
binds and obligate the inferiors. The superiors are bestowed with the power of affecting others
with evil or pain and of forcing them to conform to their conduct to their set of orders. Therefore,
the notion of Law in regards to John Austin's view is the set of rules that protects the desires of
the sovereign.
In contrast to the above, the proposition that all the laws are commands to some extent
has limitations. This because some rules provide for the amendment and the enactment processes
but do not affect lifestyles in the community. Besides, some of the Act highlights only the
favourable laws that are declaratory of the existing laws. Also, the repealing statutes are always
Michael, Bedford, (2016). The Definition of Morality (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy).
Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 6
present that shape the commands. Law of imperfection should contain effective sanction such as
the rules of morality or rules of universal Law.
In the separate view, the Concept of Law is the body of the rule that came from God and
man promotes the principles already laid down by God. God gave the Ten Commandments to
Moses and Moses delivered them to the men for guidance throughout the wilderness.
The chief
proponent in the natural law school of Law is Thomas Aquinas whose works support the origin
of Law as to have come from God.
The notion of morality is something quite hard to define that to describe. In the normative
sense, righteousness entails the code of conduct that can be accepted by anyone who meets
certain logical and volitional circumstances that almost always including the condition of being
The person meets these conditions of morality is typically conveyed by saying that the
person counts as the moral agent. In a different view, the mere act portraying a certain level code
would be accepted by any moral agent is not enough to show that the system is the moral code. It
is clear that all moral agents would also take a code of prudence or rationality, but this would not
by itself show that caution was part of morality.
Robert, B. Dove (2000). Enactment of a Law - Learn About the Legislative Process Resources.
Retrieved from
Sylva, Prints, (2010). The Relationship of Law and Morality. The Nigerian Juridical
Review, 9, 1-20. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 7
The Law can only be distinguished from the essence of morality by having clear written
rules, penalties, and the officials who can expressly interpret the laws and impose the sanctions.
Even though there is always a considerable overlap in the conduct directed by morality and that
overseen by Law, rules are usually evaluated and changed on the moral grounds. On the same
note, some of the prominent theorists like Ronald Dworkin have even asserted that the
interpretation of Law must make use of morality. Law and morality operate in conformity with
one another and morality are governed by the Law. In the same way, good morals encourage the
enactment of the moral codes in the community. This implies that in a society where there is no
conscience, the legislators make laws that ruin the neighbourhood. For instance, wicked
legislators can ensure the passing of the Law that supports human sacrifice. Therefore, there is an
open relationship between the legal systems and the people enforcing the rules in a particular
The Law affects every aspect of life since it governs the conduct of the societal members
from the foundation to the critical level and it also influences and extends from birth to after our
death time. In every developed society, a very complicated body of rules to control the activities
of its members are enacted and implemented. These laws govern the working conditions by
laying down the minimum standards of health and safety. Law also covers the moral lifestyles in
the community such as the banning of alcohol on coaches and the trains that are travelling to
football matches. Other laws have extended provisions that control personal relationships and
Robert, B. Dove (2000). Enactment of a Law - Learn About the Legislative Process
Resources. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 8
prohibits incestuous marriages.
Given the above, in the absence of Law, there would be rotten
community members since there would be laws that degrade society. For instance, without the
requirement that provides for the prohibition of the marriage between the relatives, it could be
existing across different races worldwide.
The sense of the self-enforcement is based upon the belief that one has the legal system
of the moral obligation to do as the judge instructs. Also, appeal to an honest opinion does not
reverse the underlying fact that in this situation the appeal operates as a mechanism of law
enforcement. More significantly, there is no absurdity in the notion of the moral system which
specifies that certain classes of the wrongdoer need to be punished by the implementation of the
physical sanctions. As such, the fact that the practice of such penalties for a moral resolve may
itself be a legal offence cannot invalidate this point. The deviation of the individuals from
performing the ethical principles results in the rise of immoral activates such as murder, evil,
prostitution, and rape among others.
Morality is defined as the rule of man's character in an attempt to attain a considerable
rate of happiness. In relation, happiness and misery consist of pleasure and pain. In the opposite
view, there has been an incorrect inference that whatever produces comfort can be considered
moral and whatever produces pain is immoral.
This inference can only be made by changing
the causal sequence that Locke explicitly relied on. The utility cannot be considered the basis of
John, Austin (1832). The Province of Jurisprudence Determined (John Austin) | Natural Law,
Natural Rights, and American Constitutionalism. Retrieved from
Susan, Millns, (2002). Death, Dignity and Discrimination: The Case of Pretty v. the United
Kingdom. German Law Journal. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 9
the Law or ground of obligation but rather the consequence of the obedience to the Law. Locke's
position is expressed that there may be indeed a self-indulgent motivation to the moral action and
the observance of the Law of nature. This does not necessarily destroy the objective status of that
particular Law. The Law remains constant to man, and the tenets of Law are not dependent upon
its consequences. Singh dissipates this assertion although he defines good and evil in regards to
pain and pleasure.
To Singh, pleasure and pain are the consequences of the morally right
action, and they do not constitute its essence. The moral Law is considered eternal and universal,
and it is obligatorily independent of its pleasurable consequence.
The Major Themes of the Research Project
The essence of morality is the area of philosophy concerned with theories of ethics and
the ways we ought to live our lives in regards to the Law. Metaethics is the covers the moral
philosophy and deals with the queries regarding the nature of morality. Normative ethics focus
on providing a good outline that can be used to work out what classes of actions are good and
evil, right and wrong. Lastly, applied ethics seeks to apply normative ethical theories to specific
cases to tell us what is right and wrong. This analysis aims to investigate the relationship
between Law and morality and whether the connection is necessary. Thomas Aquinas, the
proponent of the law theory, defended the connection between Law and morality claiming a
biased law is not an actual law as it does not change itself to legal validity. The legal positivism
theory defends the legality and decency are different, considering legislation cannot be reduced
to moral, as it exists independently. Immanuel Kant established that the most basic aim of moral
philosophy is to seek out the foundational principle of a metaphysics of morals and believed that
Susan, Millns, (2002). Death, Dignity and Discrimination: The Case of Pretty v. the United
Kingdom. German Law Journal. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 10
we as humans are free and autonomous as long as morality, itself, is not an illusion. In this
project. In this project, I will be analyzing the relationship between morality and the Law,
emotive topics concerning euthanasia and whether it should be legalized in England including
arguments for and against referring to philosophy and case law. I will be looking at the issue
from an ethical perspective, raising many legal matters including the right to life, the right to
liberty and the rights and duties of doctors as well as opposing views taken by religious people
referring to case law throughout.
The Relationship between Law and Morality
In analyzing the theory laid by Immanuel Kant, the distinction between Law and morals
is to be realized from the fact that the Constitution controls the external relations of men while
morality manages their inner life and motivation in the society.
In the case of Pretty v United
Kingdom, the court stated that it is difficult to separate the legal and moral. As a result of that
ruling, it becomes easy to understand that Law and morality are similar entities. As asserted, the
disagreement between the bodies of positivism and the natural law theory is the perception of
whether it is relevant to establish a connection between them.
The natural law theory regards Law as the central Concept of morality legitimate power
and is morally neutral to the essence of power.
This shows that there are the main concepts
between the Law and honesty that make them operate concurrently. Judges always contemplate
Deryck, Beyleveld, D., & Roger, Brownsword, R. (1983). Law as a moral judgement Vs. Law
as the rules of powerful. Retrieved from
John, Austin (1832). The Province of Jurisprudence Determined (John Austin) | Natural Law,
Natural Rights, and American Constitutionalism. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 11
the provisions of both the Law and the moral principles before uttering their decisions in every
case concerning the Law and morality. The natural law theory attempts to push the argument
further and to declare that human beings are likewise devoted to and united in their conception of
aims (the pursuit of knowledge, justice to their fellow men) other than that of survival
Therefore, Law and morality are interrelated to the extent that the existence of one corroborates
the presence of the other.
In the essence of both morality and Law, humans are obligated to take care of their
neighbors from both attacks and protecting them from the eradicating deeds that affect others.
Morality prohibits the indecent act of misbehaving to others and to Law it amounts to the
punishment. Lord Atkin, in Donoghue v Stevenson, stated a legal principle from the moral
principle, deliberately modifying the latter to the requirements of the former. If morality
pronounces that I should love my neighbor, the Law requires that I must not injure my
neighbor,” Atkin.
In the Law, the neighbor is everyone so closely and directly that can be
affected by the act of the neighbor. In this sense, Lord Atkin draws a firm connection between
the legal system and the Law which introduces their correlation of the two entities. In the case of
Stevenson v Donoghue, the plaintiff took the drinks manufactured by the defendants. The drink
contained decomposed snail. Consequently, the plaintiff suffered from the shock at the sight of
Roger, Cotterrell. "Common Law Approaches to the Relationship between Law and
Morality." Justice in Philosophy and Social 3, no. 1 (2000), 9-26.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 12
the snail.
Court held that every person is obligated to take care of another and the neighbor
owes such duty even in the absence of the existing contract between the manufacturer and the
consumer. Given the facts above, Law and morality consider the relationship between the
humans in the community. Both morality and Law direct the manufacturers of the consumables
or the manufacturers As such, both Law and honesty are the fundamental entities for the
development of the community since they both mandatorily prohibit immoral acts such as
murder. Several tort and criminal law provisions address the general obligation that one's
neighbours should be morally and legally protected.
This kind of social relationship provided by both morality and Law brings about the sense
of connection between the two concepts. For instance, these relationships can be constructed on
the universal adherence to the beliefs, positive sharing of moral, spiritual, ideological or
intellectual commitments. This means that a community cannot be one if both the Law and the
ethical principles are not connected. Therefore, society is built on the concurrent operation of
legal and moral principles.
The proponents of the positivism state that Law and morality are mostly separate
In contrast, the proponents of natural law theory asserted that Law and morality should
operate synchronously. Law and honesty are the close entities that each cannot function without
Wiley. "Donoghue v Stevenson (1932) AC 562." (n.d.), 1-2.
Cristobal, Orrego, (2004). Hart's Understanding of Classical Natural Law Theory. Oxford
University Press, 24(2), 287-302. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 13
the presence of the other.
Good morals help in designing good laws and wrong morals are
associated with the enactment of immoral acts and vice versa. Therefore, Law and morality are
the related entities that each supports the presence of another.
Law is generally a set of principles enacted and enforced by the sovereigns while morals
are the little set of beliefs and the behavioural standards which are created and enforced ty the
societal members. The parliament is the only recognized arm of government responsible for the
making of the laws. For instance, section 122 of the Constitution matches with the provisions on
the rules in the UK that the federal parliament is the only authorized body conferred with powers
to enact laws for the territories in Australia.
These powers made the national parliament to give
the region's self-government by passing the Northern Territory or the Self-Government Act
1978 and also the Australian Capital Territory Act 1988. As such, the parliament is always
bestowed with the powers to enact laws for the country. For proper administration of the country,
other authorities have been allowed to enact subsidiary legislations inform of the orders,
ordinances, decrees among others. On the same note, morality is communally made primarily by
the elders of the community. Honesty in the more profound sense rises from the village although
the Law ensures the regulation of the moral characters of the societal members.
In the real sense, the Law overrules and governs the morality in a particular country.
Morals come from the communal setting and are not made by the recognized authorities, and
most of the morals fall under the unwritten laws or the Customary Law. Courts cannot entertain
Standford. (2003). Legal Positivism (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy). Retrieved from
Chiassoni, Pierluigi, (2014, November 10). Kelsen on Natural Law Theory. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 14
customary laws that are repugnant to the already written constitutions. This means that morals
that are against the laws enacted by the recognized authority are always scrapped off the
community and declared illegal. For instance, in case a person commits incestuous marriage, the
elders of the community gather and impose some slight penalty on the offender and yet in most
of the countries, it leads to imprisonment under the Law. This indicates that the societal
punishment for the offences is less than the penalty under the Law. The Law imposes sanctions
on the offenders whose moral degrade the community. in the case of Shaw v Director of Public
Prosecutions [1962] AC 220, Lord Reid said stated that Court House would decide it in that
conspiracy to corrupt public morals is a crime known to the Law of England. Therefore, the Law
enforces good morals in the community and prohibits individuals from committing crimes.
Law and morality may have some slight difference in their norms, but the distinction
between morals and Law does not subordinate morality to Law.
It is factual in his opinion that
there could be immoral laws that require us to do wrong things. But this assertion does not
necessarily indicate that we have to comply with certain immoral legal obligations. Even though
there is a distinction between Law and morality, judges are obligated to consult both their moral
and legal views in judging cases. This implies that the Law and morality are merged and the
judges must consider the two entities in their judgements. The moral obligations that do not
Swarb. (2019). Regina v Knuller (Publishing, Printing and Promotions) Ltd; Knuller etc. v
Director of Public Prosecutions: HL 1972. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 15
conform to the Law automatically put code over morality.
Therefore, Law and morality must
operate concurrently.
The practical principle which guides sovereign in their opinions to regulate human
conduct is the desire of the sovereign that everybody should act as required by the Law
such, no person can indeed acknowledge his standard of judgment in his liking but rather an
opinion on a view of conduct even though not buttressed by reasons This counts only as one
person's preference and in case of any rights, they are considered to be mere appeals to a similar
choice felt by other people.
The popular conception of the linking between Law and morality is that under some
circumstances, the Law exists with the primary role of promoting honesty.
Law also preserves
those circumstances which can make moral life possible, and then enhance men to lead sober and
conscientious lives. The average and the right thinking man regards Law as justice structured and
the justice itself to some extent messy to the mass of moral principles. An s such, the positive
Law is comprehended of as the code of rules that correspond with the system of moral laws and
derives its authority from the obligatory personality of those moral laws. Even if Law and morals
are quite distinguishable, it remains factual that morality is an integral part of the Law and that
morality is concealed in the spaces of the legal system which to that extent makes it inseparable
Michael, Green, (2013). Separating Law and morality. Retrieved from
Stewart, J. Mill, (2008). John Stuart Mill on Liberty. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 16
from the Law.
Therefore, the integration of the Law and morality cannot be challenged, and
this makes the relationship between the law and morality compact.
The precise areas of the affiliation between Law and morality can be witnessed in
different fields of life.
He presents the five areas of his vital analysis of the connection between
morality and Law. He asserts that virtues relate Law and morality and their association are for
the common good. This assertion does not declare that the positive human Law should forbid all
vices or enforce all virtues but rather prohibit only the uncultured acts in society. Secondly,
moral obligation makes the two entities of morality and Law to have equal norms and
In the third view, the Law is connected to morality as much as Law is subject to fairness
and cannot oppose moral principles as proclaimed by the natural moral Law. Furthermore, the
Concept of Law is related to morality in a way that both of the two ideas are directed by a similar
source which is either the practical reason or the prudence. A profound insight into this particular
relationship can be established by determining the nature of politics and politics is the human
work of art which is connected to ethics or morals.
Lastly, Law is related to morality to the
Manmeet, Singh, (2014). Theory of Relationship between Law and Morality. Retrieved from
Arthur, Scheller, (1953). Law and Morality. Marquette Law Review, 36(2), 321-327.
Retrieved from
Pooja. (2014, November 17). Relationship and Difference between Law and Morality.
Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 17
extent that justice is the moral conception which is meaningless outside the circumference of
morality. Primarily, before a person becomes aware of the Law governing their community, he
experiences proper grooming by the society members. As such, the person grows of age while
considering their morals, and in case such a person becomes the legislator, he enacts laws that
recognize good morals. Law finds its foundation from the moral principles governing a particular
community. Therefore, morality and code are the prominent concepts that are contingent on one
Good citizens or an individual can become an idyllic citizen only when he or she follows the
moral code of conduct. So there is a close kinship between Law and morality. A state can
become an entire nation only when it functions through ideal principles of honesty.
Morality is
Joseph, Raz, (2003). About morality and the nature of Law. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 18
considered the foundation of the perfect laws, and if a state incorporates into its legal system, it
helps in the rise of an ideal state. For instance, the statutory provisions framed to eject
malpractices such as drinking of liquor, theft, and theft, and murder are the moral laws. The
moral laws stimulate our feeling of morality and enable people to become ideal citizens.
The legal provisions that originate from morality endure permanently. The above
discussion clarifies that morality and Law are very closely connected to each other. Both Law
and the right morals complement the existence of another, and the code which is opposed to the
moral Concept of the people cannot be applied and the sacredness of the Law.
The essence of
democracy does not commonly have any code as opposed to the norm of morality. The Law of a
nation is the product of the development of morality in such a state. This explains why the
legislators pay due consideration to the code of the relationship between morality and Law. The
nation and Law repeatedly affect both public attitude and actions. As such, bill echoes public
opinion and acts as an index of moral advancement. Therefore, the righteous and the legal
concepts are synchronized to each other in their operation.
The Law can entirely have excellent properties because it becomes the components of the
laws or rules. In general, the code is indifferent from the norms of morality and in the stage of
equity and natural Law that the two concepts are kept carefully.
Some of the acts in the
Michael, Green, (2013). Separating Law and morality. Retrieved from
Roscoe, Pound, (2001). Law and Morals -- Jurisprudence and Ethics. North Carolina Law
Review, 23(3), 186-222. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 19
community are not punishable since they are meant to happen and the Law respects them. For
instance, the sexual intercourses between the couple are the part of moral, and the Law
recognizes. This clarifies the connections between the Law and morality helps in ensuring what
is right in society.
The Law is made from the moral principles as the raw material. Since the bill came out of
the moral norms, they operate concurrently, and none of them cannot exist in a good state
without the support from the other.
This explains the close relationship between the Law and
the moral rules. There are various necessary affairs between Law and morality.
He says that
both morality and possess the norms, the gratuity of every moral standard can become the
content of the legal pattern and that there is no legal system with the personal vices. Therefore,
the Law comes from the moral norms, and this assures the two concepts of the relationship in
their operation.
Furthermore, Law and morality bear some intimate relationship with each other. Laws
generally originate and based on the moral principles of society that regulate the behaviour of
every individual in society. For the rules to be effective, it must recognize and represent the
moral philosophies of the people.
Similarly, good laws at times serve to revive the moral
conscience of the society, create and maintain such conditions as it may encourage the growth of
moral norms. Laws concerning prohibition and the spread of primary education are the epitome
Leslie, Green, (n.d.). Positivism and the Inseparability of Law and Morals. Retrieved from
Utchas, Saha, (2007). The conflict between Law and Morality. Retrieved from
Arturo, Perez, A. (2017). Ethics vs Morals vs Law. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 20
of this nature. Notably, morality, cannot be divorced from politics or the Law. The state must
frame such rules as will uplift the moral standard of the people and the laws that conform to the
current average of morality. There are no distinctions between Law and morality. Therefore, the
aspects of Law and morality cannot operate without the help of the other.
Given the above, the state takes the obligation of protecting the morality of the people
who live in the country. This approach has sustained as shown in the more recent case of R v
Brown (1994).
The defendants willingly consented to various sadomasochistic practices, and
none of them apprised the police. Nevertheless, the defendants were sued, and their sentences
were upheld by both the European Court of Human Rights and the House of Lords based on
public policy to preserve the morality of society. The Law is therefore seen to endeavour to
uphold what it contemplates to be the public morality even though some may clash with the
correctness of such moral code.
The Difference between Law and Morality
However, several researchers have put forward that the Law and morality are not
connected and there is a need for putting the two concepts apart from another. There is a
contention that the state enforces the rules while morality is monitored at the call of society. If a
single fault in following the Law, he is entitled to the punishment contrary to the sentence for the
violation of the morals. The most severe punishment awarded to a person for violating morality
is his social embargo. Besides, morality is concerned with both external and internal affairs of a
man; meanwhile, the Law focuses only on the foreign relations of man. This assertion implies
that the Law punishes only those individuals who violate the provisions of Law by their external
Arturo, Perez, (2017). Ethics vs Morals vs Law. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 21
actions are entitled to the charges. For instance, the Law penalizes a person only when he or she
commits murder or any other physical crimes. Also, many things are not illicit under the Law but
are intolerable to morality. For instance, failure to help the poor, and the feeling of greed are not
against the spirit of the Law and not punishable but prohibited by moral principles.
Additionally, another point to consider for the distinction between Law and morality is
that the rules are firm and they are comprehensively applicable to all citizens while morality is
quite uncertain and may be restricted to a specific community. As asserted, various races have
different standards of decency in the society. For instance, most people think it is immoral to eat
meat and drink wine. In contrast, there are people in India who consider to eat meat and drink
wine to be moral. This means that the government should arouse the excellent feeling of the
people and then impose the laws. Morality cannot up thrust upon the state, and apparently, the
Law cannot cover all the grounds of morality. To turn all moral obligations into the legal
obligations destroys morality. Therefore, there is a clean conscience and a moral conscience
although they do not always correspond.
In the corresponding view, no relationship exists between the concepts of morals and
Law because the Law demands a complete subjection to its rules and the commands. Law has the
enacting and the enforcing authority derived from the state, and it is heteronymous to men.
Therefore, no connections exist between Law and morality.
David, G. Carlson, (2009). Hart avec Kant: on the Inseparability of Law and
Morality. Washington University Open Scholarship, 1(1), 21-95. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 22
Similarly, it is vital to distinguish Law and morality so that the moral criticisms of the
Law can be visibly made and understood. He expressly agreed with the conviction that if bills
reached a certain degree of immorality, then there would be an everyday moral obligation to
resist them and to withhold obedience. This indicates that Law and morality should be handled
Law and morality are not necessarily connected, and there is on the likely need for
keeping them together. The most basic idea in positivism is the separation of Law from the
Concept of morality.
There are no logical connections between the Law and honesty, and there
is no need of keeping them together. As seen, Hart declares that there is a closer and modest
relationship between the Law and morality both have common properties. But since each has the
other does not have, Law and morality do not entirely coincide.
The Concept of Euthanasia
Euthanasia refers to the physician-assisted killing where the patient voluntarily requests
for the end of his or her life.
Those suffering from a terminal illness may seek medical
assistance so that doctors can help them die for rest instead for continued suffering. This is then
referred to as the euthanasia or the mercy killing. The term Euthanasia encompasses the medical
mechanism of administering painless killing equipment to the terminally ill patients.
Suresh B. Math & Santosh, K. Chaturvedi, (2012). Euthanasia: Right to life vs right to die.
Retrieved from
Kimberly, Holland, (2018). What Is Euthanasia? Types, Legal Status, Facts, Controversy,
and. Retrieved from
Henry, Samuel, (2018). Belgium authorized euthanasia of a terminally ill nine and 11-year-
old in youngest cases worldwide. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 23
Belgian doctors administered lethal injections to a 17-year-old kid who was suffering from the
muscular dystrophy.
For the request for euthanasia to succeed, the patient must be suffering
from incurable diseases such as cancer among others. The essence of euthanasia remains a
problem of Law, medicine, Law, ethics and religion. Legalizing it can cause trembling in
different parts of the universe.
Therefore, euthanasia is not so welcome in most of the
countries, and this explains the reasons why it took long to be integrated into the laws of the UK
after several debates.
Previously, mercy killing was considered unlawful and who eve assisted the death of
another was liable for the penalties. The report shows that the Dutch doctor faced prosecutions
for engaging in the assisted killing of the patient who has dementia.
Therefore, euthanasia
received several criticisms before it was enacted in Law in many countries.
An application tendered before the court for assisted suicide can be denied by the court. In the
case of Pretty vs DPP [2001] GAL 61 (HL), Mrs Pretty, suffering from the motor neuron disease
appealed against the DPP for disallowing the suicide killing of her husband and elude
prosecution for suicide killing.
The court rejected her claim the no one has the right to kill
another. The European Court of Human Rights enacted uncompromising prohibition of assisted
Bozider, Banovic, & Veljko, Turanjanin, (2014). Euthanasia: Murder or Not: A Comparative
Approach. Retrieved from
Arturo, Perez, A. (2017). Ethics vs Morals vs Law. Retrieved from
Simon, Caldwell, (2018, 7). Dutch doctor faces trial over 'illegal' euthanasia. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 24
A panel of judges stated that everyone should be protected by Law under Article2 of
the convention.
This means that the Law prohibits the essence of the assisted killing since no
one has the rights to kill another.
Given the above, the courts and legislators in the United Kingdom have consistently
repudiated the removal of the fundamental criminal Law that objects the practice of euthanasia.
As a result, the courts have failed to allow the administering of medical substances to end of life
of the patients. This is because doctors are obligated to save lives instead of helping the patients
to die.
In one of the famous case in regards to the Common Cause of Conway v Secretary of
State for Justice [2017] EWCA Civ 16. (2018).
The patient was terminally ill, suffering from
the Motor Neurone Disease (“MND”) ever since about 2012. Supreme Court denied the
awarding of the assisted suicide to the patient on the ground that no one has rights to kill one
Voluntary suicide was legalized in the UK in 1935 with the efforts of the lawyers and the
churchmen. The main aim was to make legalize the demise of the competent adults suffering
intolerably from an incurable illness and to receive medical assistance to die at their own careful
David, G. Carlson, D. G. (2009). Hart avec Kant: on the Inseparability of Law and
Morality. Washington University Open Scholarship, 1(1), 21-95. Retrieved from
Suresh, B. Math, & Santosh, K. Chaturvedi, S. K. (2012). Euthanasia: Right to life vs right to
die. Retrieved from
Kimberly, Holland, (2018). What Is Euthanasia? Types, Legal Status, Facts, Controversy,
and. Retrieved from
Bozidar, Banovic, & Veliko, Turanjanin, (2014). Euthanasia: Murder or Not: A Comparative
Approach. Retrieved from
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 25
and persistent request.
This will cause severe loss of lives in the world since there are
numerous incurable diseases such as cancer, HIV/AIDS that will make more people seek mercy
killing. However, this degrades the moral principles since their moral norms prohibit the act of
killing another person. Besides, the Law prohibits that act of taking away another person's life.
Why Moral Law Relating To Euthanasia Is Suitable For In-Depth Analysis
The moral law is a complex issue as it involves difficult questions regarding the role of
the government and the right of individual citizens. The argument arises between the functional
role of the government and the inability of any government to play a part in violating the right to
life of its citizens.
Given that the discussion over the authorisation of the euthanasia does not
diminish for many years, both the supporters and those opposing have established a durable
arrangement that represents their ideas about morality and its law. Typically, the issue in
affection lies in the question of what extent should the life of a fundamentally ill patient is left to
suffer. In this case, as portrayed to some European countries in the form of the fundamental
human right obligation to have a right to die. However, some arguments are being provided by
various institutions that underline the sanctity of life at any given situation, and these include
Christian and Islamic religions that critically prohibit any form of killing or suicide.
Perez, Arturo. (2017). Ethics vs Morals vs Law. Retrieved from
Paterson, Craig. "Justifications for Suicide, Assisted Suicide and Euthanasia." Assisted Suicide
and Euthanasia, 2017, 15-40. doi:10.4324/9781315096766-2.
Pakes, Francis. "Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide." Encyclopedia of Law & Society: American
and Global Perspectives 6, no. 2 (2013), n224. doi:10.4135/9781412952637.n224.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 26
Despite the religious prohibition, the supporters of the act think it's a moral obligation for
the physician to end the life of any person suffering from pain and has no hopes of getting
Although both parties hold different perspectives regarding euthanasia, they all believe
in durable individual independence. In this case, both parties all bear the concept of respect for
the patient, in which they adhere to all the wishes of the patient and the related fundamental
governance of the values. Notably, the argument of those supporting it is primarily based on the
theories whoever, attempt to kill or commit suicide is considered not to be religious. For that
matter, some legislators resolve this issue basing on their religious beliefs. Below is a discussion
of various ideas, as portrayed by different individuals.
Euthanasia as Murder
In the present world, legislative regulations happen to become challenging depending on
the perception and ideas an individual holds while giving the decision.
First, all Islamic bond
countries, direct euthanasia is typically forbidden, and for that matter, it is linked to the murder.
For instance, in Iranian law, euthanasia is not mentioned anywhere in the legal text; however,
some situations receive lenient or no punishments compared to other murder cases. According to
Kue, Josef. "Everything Under Control: How and When to Die - A Critical Analysis of the
Arguments for Euthanasia." IntechOpen - Open Science Open Minds | IntechOpen. Last
modified September 15, 2011.
Kue, Josef. "Everything Under Control: How and When to Die - A Critical Analysis of the
Arguments for Euthanasia." IntechOpen - Open Science Open Minds | IntechOpen. 2011.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 27
Cohen, assisted-suicide conducted by a physician is deemed to be a violation of human dignity,
and this makes them hesitant to participate in many aspects related to euthanasia.
due to the above beliefs, there have been no attempts for further interventions of authorising the
act among these countries. These ideas make legislators adamant in forming any regulation that
can legalise the act of euthanasia, as they view it as an act against their beliefs.
Right to Die
This terminology is mainly used in the various debates associated with euthanasia to
formulate the right the affliction of death to whoever is interested. Given that death is part of
nature, everyone is expected to die any given time.
In this case, it can be delayed but cannot be
stopped in any way. Since it is inevitable to die, and everyone is expected to die at any time,
there is no established right for death. Contrary, there are fundamental rights to life and security
for any given individual. Admittedly, where an establishment of a right, there is must be an
obligation; hence, there is a right to die and to exist.
However, the challenge associated with
this case is that there is a need for someone to carry out the process of inflicting death on anyone
in need of it since most of the requisitioned people are not capable of performing the act on their
own. For that matter, the advocators depend on this to align their arguments that the
responsibilities should be assigned to the hospital physicians. The assertion of the right to dies
Cohen, Lewis M. "Murder and Euthanasia Accusations Against Physicians." Mayo Clinic
Proceedings 87, no. 9 (2012), 814-816. doi:10.1016/j.mayocp.2012.05.016.
Boudreau, J. D., and Margaret Somerville. "Euthanasia and assisted suicide: a physician’s and
ethicist’s perspectives." Medicolegal and Bioethics, 2014, 1. doi:10.2147/mb.s59303.
Fieser, James. "Euthanasia (The Practice of Morality)." The University of Tennessee at Martin.
Last modified 2010.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 28
should be differentiated from the right to be allowed to die.
For instance, the refusal of letting
the patient receives the life-support treatment and is left to die. Therefore, the law underlines this
process as murder and therefore denies a suffering patient the right to die and end the pain being
The priority of value and respect for a person's rights to independence is considered
crucial in this aspect. In the principium approach to the ethics of biomedical, respect for
independence is considered to be the leading requirement. The element refers to the individual
based right to determine on his behalf and also have the right to make the desired decisions based
on what they see as right and wrong. Here an individual is seen as the supreme controller of
himself. This characterises the rationale of self that is in association with the family and the
community. Notably, respect for autonomy is established into practice and in the law through the
existing doctrine of informed permission. Typically, it assesses that the patient should be fully
aware of any related consequences, benefits that come with the act. Besides, the terminology is
based on legal factuality as the patient should be conscious and understanding to determine the
desires of the need to be executed.
However, meeting this obligation would seem a challenge
given that most of the people who require this aid of being accomplished are in most cases
critically ill, and lack the energy to perform all the required necessities.
Kraut, Richard. "Euthanasia." Against Absolute Goodness, 2012, 162-163.
Welford, Claire, Kathy Murphy, Vivien Rodgers, and Theresia Frauenlob. "Autonomy for
older people in residential care: a selective literature review." International Journal of Older
People Nursing 7, no. 1 (2012), 65-69. doi:10.1111/j.1748-3743.2012.00311.x.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 29
R (Pretty) V DPP
The case of R (Pretty) v DPP fn1 has heightened the debate of the right to die. Diane
Pretty was suffering from an incurable fatal disease and had articulated her desire to die at the
time of her choice.
Libertarian activists of the sovereign rights of people to decide for their
destiny and end their lives in whichever way they want, identify with Mrs Pretty. They assert that
her wish is a reflection of her own decision and of which violates or does not harm anyone else
and it is in everyone's supportive interest. Mrs Pretty perceives death as the favoured option to
the pain being experienced and given that it will eventually come up at a later stage. Due to the
above, it would be essential to legalise it and regulate how it is supposed to be conducted.
Ultimately, death is not painful in the eyes of the family and the victim as long as it relieves the
patient from the severe pain that is being experienced.
Three Theories Dealing With Law and Morality
Liberal View, Discusses Harm To Others. John Stuart Mill 1859
The liberal view is known as the harm to others principle established by John Stuart Mill
in 1859 who believed that the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any
member of civilised society against his will is to prevent harm to others. Mill believed the law
should be used to avoid injury to citizens not to enforce moral principles.
In this case, he
R (Pretty) V DPP. "R (on the Application of Pretty) V. Director of Public Prosecutions."
Global Health Rights | Database. Last modified 2001.
Birks, David. "Moral Status and the Wrongness of Paternalism." Social Theory and
Practice 40, no. 3 (2014), 483-498. doi:10.5840/soctheorpract201440329.
Showing Page:
Law and Morality 30
thought that a person could not make a community; neither does the community make a society.
Notably, to have a free practical and prosperous society, an individual has to surrender some free
will to get the protection. John Stuart argues that there are particular personal rights, which can
never be possessed by the government. For instance, after years of Mill's publication, in the case
of Gonzales v. O Centro Espirita Beneficente Uniao do Vegetal I, 546 U.S 418 (2006) dared the
protecting part of the government against the free exercise of religion. For that matter, Mill
would approve the court ruling since in his views following the free practice of will, restrictions
of the government. Admittedly, both the court and Mill portray that respect for individual
opinions and ideas and not applying regulations to interfere with private life. Ultimately, the law
must be able to comply with the person’s wishes and likes.
Government restriction precipitate action is to deny people of free will, and as a result,
pain is inflicted on them.
However, it is ethically unfair to consider one's free will at the
expense of other people through inflicting harm and also deny others from practising their will.
Typically, the wellbeing of an individual directly influences any other person who might be
dependent or attached to him as the society is based on vast interconnected web and not just in a
single entity. Further, to prevent impairment significantly increases the possibilities of people
exercising their will due to the limited chances of harm.
Besides, it’s the target for every
society to act following the masses and not in the interest of a single person. In this case, the
government must provide proper regulations to prevent the will be challenged before they occur.
Having an individual punished for the adverse actions portrayed do not change the effect of the </