Justice: A Funeral Oration

1. THRENODY Is it any longer possible to talk seriously about justice and rights? Are these words corrupted and debased beyond redemption? There is no need to multiply examples of how anything that any pressure group has the chutzpah to lay claim to forthwith becomes a right, nemine contradicente. Nor is this Newspeak restricted to the vulgar. The President of the Pacific Division of the American Philosophical Association has granted permission to misuse words like rights and justice if you do so in the service of desirable political ends. Our most universally acclaimed theoretician of justice has shown at length that justice is a will perpetual and constant to forcibly take goods from those who have earned them and give them to those who have not; and the leading light of Anglo-American jurisprudence has constructed a “straightforward” argument proving that a citizen's right to equal protection of the laws is fully satisfied if only the bureaucrat denying him or her a public benefit on racial grounds shows “respect and concern” while processing the forms
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DOI 10.1017/s0265052500003368
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Anarchy, State, and Utopia.Robert Nozick - 1974 - Philosophy 52 (199):102-105.
Mortal Questions.Thomas Nagel - 1979 - Tijdschrift Voor Filosofie 43 (3):578-578.
Taking Rights Seriously.Ronald Dworkin - 1977 - Ethics 88 (1):80-86.

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