¶ … Blind" Justice In The Modern Era
There are three different types of justice that can be understood within the frame of the readings: revenge, eye for an eye, and advantageous justice (the outcome is beneficial for society). While justice is an abstract notion that all can, to some extent, agree is a good thing -- in reality, the exercise of justice is less certain, regardless of the type. Indeed, in many cases, the type of justice that one pursues has a fundamentally subjective character to it, whereas objective justice is often missing from the public discourse. The reasons for the lack of objective justice could stem back to the erection of the modern era, when Lady Justice herself became "blindfolded" as Miller notes (2). Why should justice be blind? Does that not mean that it cannot see what the object that it intends to strike? Such are the questions that Miller raises -- and the answers given indicate that justice is supposed to be impartial in terms of regarding race, class, creed, etc. (in the supposedly egalitarian modern world, all are meant to be equal before the law). But what happens when the law itself (that is, justice -- or the exercise of justice) is corrupted to the point where no type of justice can be expected to be executed, other than the "justice" associated with personal revenge (exampled by the case of T. Cullen Davis, accused of murder, the motive a kind of revenge). Yet, as in the case of...
This paper will argue that justice in the modern era is indeed blind, as Miller notes, and that a number of problematic consequences of "blind" justice arise as a result.
Miller's assertion that the blind in olden days were also beggars leads the reader to the important point that "blind" justice might be such a beggar. That is to say, alms (bribes) could be extended to Lady Justice in exchange for a blind eye on one's misdeeds (as some allege is the case in the murder trial of T. Cullen Davis) (Dunne). Thucydides likewise argues that justice is not to be expected until those who are not injured are as outraged as those who are injured. In other words, social justice demands collective social action. It demands a social conscience, which in turn demands social reflection, insight, inward looking -- in short, eyes. If Justice is blind, how can she see to even act upon or know the conscience, the moral law, the natural law, the law of the land, etc. Blind justice, as Miller intimates, is as good as no justice at all.
In such a culture, personal revenge becomes the only type of justice that one understands and it is only practicable (if the case of Cullen Davis is any measure) when one is rich enough to be able to afford "bribing" the judge in order to beat the rap (at least, if one is…
Dunne, Dominic. "Oil, Money, and Mystery." YouTube. Web. 20 Sep 2015.
Miller, William Ian. Eye for an Eye. NY: Cambridge University Press, 2006. Print.
Thucydides. On Justice, Power, and Human Nature. IN: Hackett Publishing, 1993.
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