Is Justice for all Possible

The concept of justice is a controversial one and it becomes even more controversial when we take a look at how widespread it can be applied. Justice is about equality and fairness in treating fellow human beings. What is considered as justice to some individuals is not necessarily taken in similar regard by the others. The concept of justice for all is therefore unachievable.

Accessibility to justice is considered a fundamental human right that goes a long way into addressing poverty, prevention and resolution of conflicts. Many countries have therefore embarked on reforming their judicial and government systems. Many countries around the world have had court and government systems that are inefficient and lacking democratic answerability. Other countries have entrenched corruption which is rampant in virtually all aspect of governance. This has resulted in parliament not being able to affirm their obligations in the recommended manner. The less fortunate in such societies become vulnerable as they are likely to fall victims of corruption and officers who are uncaring. These people have reasonably little prospects of seeking legal redress for the mistreatment. It should be noted that accessibility to the justice system goes beyond accessing the courts and guaranteed legal representation. Justice therefore should mean that there is equality before the law and that there is a general consensus about the legal and judicial activities being just. The system should also be seen to be impartial to the disadvantaged and less fortunate in the society. The concept of justice has brought about different issues and some sees justice as a preserve of a few when it should be for all. This paper shall examine the possibility of developing a system of justice that can be appreciated by all.

Justice for all
Justice has been described as a moral concept that is founded on fairness, rationality and ethical principles. Justice is associated with fairness and impartiality when dealing with the other individuals. The concept of justice being equal to all has been met with mixed reactions with some claiming that it is achievable whereas others contemplate that it is unrealistic. In its ideal form, justice is regarded as equality in terms of resource and opportunity distribution (Mckinley, Brayboy, Castagno,  Maughan, 2010). Within the justice system itself, there are areas where fairness and equality has fallen short in regard to the various rights including right to speedy trials and access to a proficient attorney (Dunn, 2000).

The UNDP identifies several areas which improves accessibility to justice and they include legal protection, legal awareness, legal aid and counseling, adjudication, traditional dispute resolution mechanisms and law enforcement (United Nations Development Programme, 2010, para 2). The UNDP acknowledges that there is a connection between establishment of democratic tenets, poverty reduction, observation of human rights, and accessibility to justice by all. Most nations have initiated reforms that will lead to the creation of autonomous justice systems. These reforms are being implemented in the criminal and civil justice systems. Nations that are run by incompetent court and government system are prone to injustice practices as they lack democratic accountability towards their activities (United Nations Development Programme, 2010).

Corruption within the public sector has been entrenched in some regimes due to authoritative regimes and lack of checks and balances hence lacking the instruments that ensures answerability. With this scenario, the parliament of such regimes is faced with an enormous challenge in policy making that could supervise the executive. This becomes a burden to the less fortunate as they increasingly become exposed and consequently falling victims of the corrupt and unsympathetic office bearers (Perkins, 2007). These victims find it difficult to access the legal system in an effort to seek redress.

The UNDP identifies justice as a very crucial element in its mandate aimed at the reduction of poverty and strengthening democratic principles. In carrying out the reforms within the justice system, the UNDP is engaged in the support of justice and the associated systems to provide an affirmative action to the alienated. This is in consistency with the UNDPs dedication to the Millennium Declaration and the realization of the Millennium Development Goals. It is believed that by giving power to the less fortunate in the society so as to look for correction of the injustice that has been meted on them and strengthen the connection between official and unofficial structures without leaving out the countering of inequality that has been inherently embedded in the system provides a leeway in accessing justice to those who have been unable to access it. All this is in an effort to ensure that there is justice for all (United Nations Development Programme, 2010).

Those arguing that justice for all can not be achieved believe that justice is always accompanied by selfish interests and what is just to one individual may not be just to the others. Selfish interests therefore stands in the way of achieving a just system for all stakeholders. There is pervasive bias based on sex, religious affiliations, racial connotations, among other criteria which renders impossibility to the capacity of the society to achieve equality in accessing the societal opportunities. Tenets of justice hold that the benefits and costs have to be shared with fairness in accordance with differences and similarities among the members of the society (Regan  VanDeVeer, 1982).

Based on this principle, affirmative action becomes a form of unfair treatment to some individuals as it encourages preferential treatment towards the minority groups and the less fortunate. Affirmative actions are nevertheless supported by the principle of compensatory justice which claims that a just compensation should be made to restore any unjust activity to the victims. Preferential treatment is therefore regarded as just by the minority groups (Regan  VanDeVeer, 1982). Equal opportunity legislations are therefore controversial as they do not serve the interests of the majority but focus on the uplifting of the less fortunate. This is a clear example of how injustice in the society can not be avoided. Another example would be on the concept of Euthanasia. Though individuals have the right to live in the manner that they choose, but can the society allow them decide on how they wish to die The society is generally against euthanasia and this shows how justice for all is unachievable (Perkins, 2007). This is because we can not be doing justice to individuals who are in agony and would be wishing to die in peace by denying them what they deserve-a peaceful death. Self interest comes into question again as the patients wish to die is curtailed by our interest to preserve life.

The concept of justice for all can only be achieved in theory through the affirmative action and related activities. In reality however, justice for shall remain to be an elusive phenomenon. Since the human society is driven by selfish interests based on what is good to the self, we are unable to achieve satisfactory justice for all. What are perceived to be unfair treatment resulting from controversial scenarios like euthanasia, inequity that is founded on various aspects and the related remedies such as affirmative action are here to stay. This translates to mean that justice for all shall only prevail in theory.


Post a Comment