Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Law may be final, but it's not infallible

Apr 17. 2014
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Re: "Law's sanctity must be respected if we are to avoid Blood Moon prophecy," Opinion, April 17.
Columnist Pornpimol Kanchanalak’s touching faith in the law as the ultimate arbiter of all conflicts would be more convincing if it were not for the following syllogism: “Human beings are fallible.  Human beings make, interpret and administer the law. Therefore the law is fallible.” The particular human beings who make and interpret the law are almost always trained as lawyers. That’s a further guarantee of their fallibility. There is also the saying, “The law is an ass.”  
Khun Pornpimol asserts that “the [US Supreme] court is not final because it is infallible; but rather it is infallible because it is final”. It may be final in a US context, but it is hardly infallible. Proof of this is its decision, cited by Khun Pornpimol, to award the presidency of the United States to George W Bush despite the fact that Al Gore won the popular vote. The American people’s sheep-like acceptance of this outrage can be justified only by citing the alternative, which was political instability that, in a worst-case scenario, could have led to civil war.
The message is clear: The law deserves respect only when the people who make it get it right. If they get it wrong, it’s up to people to pressure them until they get it right.
Samut Prakan

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