And hence all social inequalities which have ceased to be considered expedient

And hence all social inequalities which have ceased

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And hence all social inequalities which have ceased to be considered expedient, assume the character not of simple inexpediency, but of injustice, and appear so tyrannical, that people are apt to wonder how they ever could have been tolerated ; forgetful that they themselves perhaps tolerate other inequalities under an equally mistaken notion of expediency, the correc tion of which would make that which they approve seem quite as monstrous as what they have at last learnt to condemn. The entire history of social im provement has been a series of transitions, by which one custom or institution after another, from being a against him is of relying too exclusively upon such deductions, and de clining altogether to be bound by the generalizations from specific ex perience which Mr. Spencer thinks that utilitarians generally confine themselves to. My own opinion (and, as I collect, Mr. Spencer's) is, that in ethics, as in all other branches of scientific study, the consili ence of the results of both these processes, each corroborating and verifying the other, is requisite to give to any general proposition the kind and degree of evidence which constitutes scientific proof.]
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ftOW CONNECTED WITH JUSTICE. 95 supposed primary necessity of social existence, has passed into the rank of an universally stigmatized in justice and tyranny. So it has been with the distinc tions of slaves and freemen, nobles and serfs, patricians and plebeians ; and so it will be, and in part already is, with the aristocracies of colour, race, and sex. It appears from what has been said, that justice is a name for certain moral requirements, which, regarded collectively, stand higher in the scale of social utility, and are therefore of more paramount obligation, than any others ; though particular cases may occur in which some other social duty is so important, as to overrule any one of the general maxims of justice. Thus, to save a life, it may not only be allowable, but a duty, to steal, or take by force, the necessary food or medicine, or to kidnap, and compel to officiate, the only qualified medical practitioner. In such cases, as we do not call anything justice which is not a virtue, we usually say, not that justice must give way to some other moral principle, but that what is just in ordinary cases is, by reason of that other principle, not just in the particular case. By this useful accom modation of language, the character of indefeasibility attributed to justice is kept up, and we are saved from the necessity of maintaining that there can be laudable injustice. The considerations which have now been adduced resolve, I conceive, the only real difficulty in the utilitarian theory of morals. It has always been evi dent that all cases of justice are also cases of expedi ency : the difference is in the peculiar sentiment which attaches to the former, as contradistinguished from the latter. If this characteristic sentiment has been i
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96 UTILITARIANISM.
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