Utah People's Party

…proclain liberty through out all the land….(Leviticus 25:10)

Cicero on the Decrees of Fools

on November 5, 2012

But if the principles of Justice were founded on the decrees of peoples, the edicts of princes, or the decisions of judges, then justice would sanction robbery and adultery and forgery of wills, in case these acts were approved by the votes or decrees of the populace. But if so great a power belongs to the decisions and decrees of fools that the laws of Nature can be changed by their votes, then why do they not ordain that what is bad and baneful shall be considered good and salutary? Or, if a law can make Justice Injustice, can it not also make good out of bad? (Marcus Tullius Cicero, quoted in W. Cleon Skousen, The Five Thousand Year Leap, p 45)

Cicero mentions three things that are evil: robbery, adultery and forgery of wills. Most people realize that these things would still be evil even if a law passed that said they were good. If good and evil depend on laws passed by people, then robbery, adultery and forgery of wills could be made good. Since these things cannot be made good it follows logically that good and evil do not depend on the votes of the people or of their representatives. Moral principles depend on unchangeable aspects of human nature. Marcus Tullius Cicero was right to argue decades before the birth of our Lord that neither the people themselves nor their representatives can make evil good or good evil.

What the people or their representatives can decide is what standards government will enforce. What we the people do or not do depends on our will so we can decide what we will or will not enforce. When choosing what to enforce and what not to, the people are duty bound to enforce only standards that are morally right.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: