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2006

Ethics and Political Philosophy

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Moral duty

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The Duty To Obey The Law, David Lefkowitz Nov 2006

The Duty To Obey The Law, David Lefkowitz

Philosophy Faculty Publications

Under what conditions, if any, do those the law addresses have a moral duty or obligation to obey it simply because it is the law? In this essay, I identify five general approaches to carrying out this task, and offer a somewhat detailed discussion of one or two examples of each approach. The approaches studied are: relational-role approaches that appeal to the fact that an agent occupies the role of member in the political community; attempts to ground the duty to obey the law in individual consent or fair play; natural duty approaches; instrumental approaches; and philosophical anarchism, an approach ...