Combining Replies from both Elgin Hushbeck, and Joel Watts.
[6/24/13 – I inadvertently posted the wrong content for Joel Watts’ reply. The corrected text is below. – HN]
Response #2 by Joel Watts:
1.) The question you propose – justice or rules – is not a difficult to answer. We live in a Republic of laws, thus the laws must be followed. This is a major issue with democracies —justice is based only on the whims of the majority. This is why our Founders hated democracy and instead placed us within a Republic. While the guilty may go free and the innocent be imprisoned, if the laws are followed, then the Republic is upheld. Perhaps this is what shades your view of the present system, you believe it is a democracy.
Unfortunately, “scandal” is a word attached to easily. The IRS did its job and should be commended. Congress, on the other hand, did not. This goes back to the law bit. We have ingrained in law certain procedures, such as the 30 day request. If these aren’t followed, then other actions are, by law, implemented. Given the rapid change in laws around the 501(c) entities, and the cutting of funds to this particular IRS department, the IRS will have to make sure.
As far as your poor caricature of the lung transport girl, I am unsure as to where to begin to straighten out your views. Sarah Palin is a liar. The rule is no more a death panel than the reverse of not having rules. Again, we live in a Republic with rules and laws, and yet you would deem them broken at every whim. If you cannot properly address the issue, I have to wonder what is the point?
2.) You support the death. Could you give me Scripture to that regard? Or is this purely a decision based on current philosophical thought?
Response #2 by Elgin Hushbeck:
On a jury of peers, I agree that prejudices could be a problem, and one that cuts both ways. Some would be more likely to convict, some would be more likely to acquit.
As for citizen suits, I don’t see how these can be allowed, and still retain the rule of law or avoid a return to vigilantism. As for your example, that is just historically wrong. Segregation was correctly and properly challenged on a number of fronts, including suits by those who were harmed by it. Such suits are not the type of suits I am referring to. Normally to bring a suit one must be directly harmed. The suits I am referring to are those which until recently, would have been dismissed because there was no standing. In fact this is still the case in many areas of law, however in a few areas, particularly environmental law, special exceptions have been made and enforcement powers granted to individuals.
I would agree that “Justice is not retribution” but beyond that we have vastly different definitions for justice. Mine is a pretty traditional understanding that involves equity and righting wrongs. It is distinguished from revenge in pretty much the same way that Aristotle did, as a rational process that seeks equity, as opposed to an irrational response grounded in inflicting pain. Justice is rooted outside of ourselves, ultimately in God, and on earth through the state, which is why vigilantism is to be avoided. Revenge is rooted within ourselves and in our desires, rather than our reason. But this is a distinction that is often overlooked.