Values File

Justice requires responsible individuals in a

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Unformatted text preview: t a richer moral vocabulary -- one that invokes principles of decency, duty, responsibility, and the common good, among others. 6. COMMUNITARIANISM PROMOTES RECIPROCAL SOCIAL JUSTICE Amitai Etzioni, Professor of Government at George Washington University, Founder and Chairman of the Communitarian Network, THE SPIRIT OF COMMUNITY, 1993, p. 256. At the heart of the communitarian understanding of social justice is the idea of reciprocity: each member of the community owes something to all the rest, and the community owes something to each of its members. Justice requires responsible individuals in a responsive community. COMMUNITARIANISM IS A VALUABLE PHILOSOPHY Derek E. Brown, J.D., Pepperdine University School of Law, 2000, PEPPERDINE LAW REVIEW, p. 996. Communitarianism represents one of the most vibrant and feasible attempts to restore to American civic society, in part, the concept to which de Tocqueville may have been referring. It is a revolutionary attempt to reconcile, in a sense, our positive laws with the natural law, and simply remind both individuals and communities what those laws are. As Aquinas phrased it, "Every human law has just so much of the nature of law as is derived from the law of nature. But if in any point it deflects from the law of nature, it is no longer a law but a perversion of law." It may well be said of intrusive egalitarian laws which contribute to a decline in social capital what both Augustine and Martin Luther King, Jr. have said: an unjust law is really no law at all. Communitarians seek to ensure that our legal structure is composed of bona fide "laws." While all citizens cannot participate in the American government to the extent that people participated in the idealized Greek polis, Communitarians seek to enlist citizens' participation in their respective communities-a more adequate substitute. SLHS Value File Communitarianism Bad Communitarianism is irreconcilable with liberalism Linda C. Raeder, doctoral candidate political theory at Catholi...
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