Spirit of the Law vs. Letter of the Law:

Total posts: [4]
1 SandJosieph1st Mar 2011 11:24:24 PM from Grand Galloping Galaday , Relationship Status: Brony
Bigonkers! is Magic
I was thinking about this while fiddling with my Apocalypse Judge character, who prefers to follow the spirit of the law as it lets her bypass many loop holes created by the letter of the law, which often puts her at odds with many lawyers, judges, and governments. But what really is the better system? On one hand, the law can be followed to the letter allowing loopholes to weaseled through while following the law's spirit can be hard as the spirit can change over time.
2 Linhasxoc2nd Mar 2011 07:05:24 PM , Relationship Status: With my statistically significant other
I'm of the opinion that "spirit of the law" is too often taken as "what I want the law to mean." Definitely letter unless the case is absolutely obvious.
3 drunkscriblerian2nd Mar 2011 07:06:36 PM from Castle Geekhaven , Relationship Status: In season
Street Writing Man
@Lin: good point, although going by the letter has its issues too. This is why I'm for judges having more power to interpret the law in specific cases where it's needed.
If I were to write some of the strange things that come under my eyes they would not be believed.

~Cora M. Strayer~
4 Barkey2nd Mar 2011 07:49:44 PM from Bunker 051 , Relationship Status: [TOP SECRET]
War Profiteer
As a Cop myself I'll tell you that balance is critical. The spirit of the law is something to be used with the discretion that folks in Law Enforcement are given, but it should never be a primary function. Spirit of the Law is ok so long as you don't use it so much that you are thumbing your nose at the Letter of the Law.

In other words, it's ok to bust some kids for drug possession and if they look like it's just experimentation, scaring the shit out of them and then pouring it down the storm drain and letting them go is superior to actually writing paperwork on it and charging them.(Oh, and informing the parents)

But not enforcing drug laws at all is not acceptable, regardless of the officers personal opinion of it. Discretion is a fickle bitch, you can only get away with as much as the rest of your department(and the news, depending on how bad it gets lol) let you without saying you are doing something wrong.
The AR-15 is responsible for 95% of all deaths each year. The rest of the deaths are from obesity and drone strikes.
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Total posts: 4