Presentation on theme: "Introduction to the Law and Legal System"— Presentation transcript:
1 Introduction to the Law and Legal System Chapter 1
2 What is Law?Rules and regulations made and enforced by government that regulate the conduct of people within a society.Parental Laws: Chores, BedtimeGovernment Laws
3 Every society in history has had them Without Laws = Confusion and ChaosNo one can be above the Law
4 Laws and Values Law’s reflect society’s values Murder, theft, rape etc.
5 Class Discussion Question Think of a normal day and write down at least 5 activities that you are engaged in during the day. After coming up with those 5 activities, list some laws that you are familiar with that coincide or go along with these activities. What is the purpose of the laws you have identified? Would you change any of these laws?
6 Goals of the legal system Protect basic human rightsPromote fairnessHelp resolve conflictsPromote order and stabilityPromote desirable social and economic behaviorRepresent the will of the majorityProtect the rights of minorities
7 Interpretation of LawThere are laws against murder, but what about the case of self defense? What about during times of war? What about abortion?
8 Law and Values Con’tLaws must balance rights with responsibilities, the will of the majority with the rights of the minority, the need for order with the need for basic human rights.Laws can be based on moral, economic, political, or social values. As values change, so can laws.
9 Law and Values Con’tMoral values deal with fundamental questions of right and wrong.For example: Laws against killing promote society’s primary moral value—the protection of life.However, some things that are considered immoral may not violate the lawQUESTION: What are some immoral actions that may not be against the law?
10 Law and Values Con’tEconomic values deal with the accumulation, preservation, use, and distribution of wealth.Many laws promote economic values by encouraging certain economic decisions and discouraging others.For example: The law encourages home ownership by giving tax benefits to people who borrow money to pay for a home.
11 Law and Values Con’tPolitical values reflect the relationship between government and individuals.Laws making it easier to vote promote citizen participation in the political process, a basic American political value.
12 Law and Values Con’tSocial values concern issues that are important to society.For example: It is an American social value that all students be provided with free public education through high school.Like other values, social values can change. In the past society believed that school sports were not as important for girls as for boys.Today, laws require schools to provide females with sports opportunities similar to those offered to males.
13 Laws/Society Laws cannot solve all of society’s problems Example: Prohibition Act 1919 made alcohol illegal
16 Human RightsHuman rights are the rights all people have just because they are human beings.To advocate human rights is to demand that the dignity of all people be respected.Both government and private individuals can violate human rights.Human rights apply in people’s homes, schools, and workplaces.
17 Human Rights Con’tThe Universal Declaration of Human Rights is a statement of human rights which has been agreed to by almost every country.First written and adopted by the United Nations in 1948 under the leadership of Eleanor Roosevelt.Today every country that belongs to the UN agrees to promote, recognize, and observe these rights.
18 Human Rights Con’t Two other major treaties include: The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (which protects rights such as freedoms of speech, religion, and press and the right to participate in government)The International Covenant on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights (which provides for rights such as the right to adequate education, food, housing, and health care)
19 Constitutional Framework Constitution = Highest Law of The LandKey is Limited GovernmentGovernment can only pass laws listed in Article I of Constitution
21 The Executive Branch (The President and Federal Agencies) They enforce the laws
22 The Legislative Branch (Congress) House of Representatives and the SenateThey pass the laws
23 The Judicial Branch The Courts They interpret the laws The Supreme Court
24 Checks and BalancesThis system assures that one branch cannot become too powerful.Examples: Executive branch can veto laws made by Congress.Judicial branch can declare laws unconstitutional.Legislative branch can impeach the President.Executive branch can choose members of Judicial.