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Chapter 1 Study Guide

Chapter 1 Study Guide
1. What do you think are the main differences between legal rules and other kinds of rules?
Legal rules hold legal consequences whereas others may hold more personal or moral
2. Give one or two examples of how changing values and/or technology have led to changes in the
1) Changing views of homosexuality have resulted in the legalization of gay marriage.
2) The invention of computers has led to laws pertaining to people’s privacy rights as far as the
internet and computers go.
3. Do you believe that the “ruling class” (decide for yourself who those people may be) unfairly
pass laws favorable to themselves and detrimental to the rest of us? If they do, what can we do
about it?
I believe that some of the ruling class, which to me are those in government positions such as
congress, use their power to benefit themselves as much as they can, but not all of them.
Thankfully, our checks on power prevent most of that and certainly prevent anything too
4. In what ways can conflict be beneficial to a society? Can conflict actually support consensus?
Conflict can be beneficial to society by getting different perspectives and ideas out in the open
to be examined. Conflict can support consensus because either a new perspective that everyone
agrees with is brought up or someone or some group can be convincing enough to help
everyone reach consensus.
5. Would you choose to live under a brutal dictator such as Hitler, Stalin, or Saddam Hussein or
suffer the chaos of society without any kind of law?
Personally, I’d rather live in the chaos of lawlessness because at least I know that I can live the
right way and do the right thing even if other people choose not to. At least I won’t be forced to
be killed or be poor, or worse inflict that on others.
6. Why is law sometimes at odd with justice? Give an example.
Because sometimes the laws can be interpreted as black and white when there are grey areas.
For example, a mother kills someone defending her children but goes to prison for murder.
7. Relate the rule of law to Packer’s mode; o criminal justice.
Packer’s model of criminal justice looks at the Crime Control Model and the Due Process Model
and states that one can’t be relied on over the other. This relates to the rule of law in that the
laws have to be looked at from both perspectives.
8. Explain the concept of the rule of law.
According to the book, the rule of law is, “created by the Legislature, provides rules to guide
conduct, and are a means of resolving disputes and maintaining order through the medium of
the courts (Hemmens et al., 4).”
9. Why is Marbury v Madison such an important decision?
It granted the power of judicial review which is to declare a law unconstitutional.
10. What are some of the benefits of the common-law approach?
We all follow a common body of written laws, we have certain rights as citizens and the power
of our rulers, in America’s case government officials, is limited.