(Zenit) Cardinal Burke's Address in Kenya on Law at Service of Justice and Truth

Aristotle’s reflection on the political life and his preference for the republic as a form of government help us to understand the foundational importance of the rule of law. Commenting on Aristotle’s reasons for favoring a republican form of government, combining good features of both oligarchy and democracy, Monsignor Robert Sokolowski, renowned professor of the School of Philosophy at The Catholic University of America in Washington, D.C., underlines the essential relationship between a stable political life and the respect for the norm of law. He writes:

In a republic, a large middle class ”“ middle in both an economic and an ethical sense ”“ is established between the rich and the poor, and the laws and not men rule, and they do so for the benefit of the whole city, not for any particular part. To live this way is a great human accomplishment. It is a truly exalted exercise of reason for citizens to allow the laws to rule, to have the strength of reason and character to subordinate themselves to the law, which they allow to rule for the benefit of the whole. Not all people have the civic habits and public vision to let the laws and not their own partisan interests rule over the whole; not all people are immediately capable of being citizens…

The stability of any society or government depends upon the education of the people in the civic virtues which respect the rule of law for the good of all.

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One comment on “(Zenit) Cardinal Burke's Address in Kenya on Law at Service of Justice and Truth

  1. Undergroundpewster says:

    Pretty deep for me but two important things emerged to keep in mind.
    [blockquote] If, as a result of the tragic obscuring of the collective conscience, an attitude of skepticism were to succeed in bringing into question even the fundamental principles of the moral law, the democratic system itself would be shaken in its foundations, and would be reduced to a mere mechanism for regulating different and opposing interests on a purely empirical basis.[xxxii]
    Natural law expresses the metaphysical order which can be, has been and is known by the use of human reason. [/blockquote]


    [blockquote] Faith enables reason to do its work more effectively and to see its proper object more clearly. This is where Catholic social teaching has its place: it has no intention of giving the Church power over the State. Even less is it an attempt to impose on those who do not share the faith ways of thinking and modes of conduct proper to faith. Its aim is simply to help purify reason and to contribute, here and now, to the acknowledgment and attainment of what is just.[xl]
    Pope Benedict XVI [/blockquote]