The Rule of Law and the Opponents of Law


Human rights are expressed in the Constitution in a mainly negative manner, but in the twentieth century, positive claims have been added. These include the right to education, to employment, and to be free from discrimination. Such rights are declared enforceable and binding upon the government. The rules that govern these rights are called civil and common law.

Principles of the Rule of Law

In theory, the rule of law is a system of government where no one is above the law. This means that everyone is equal before the law, regardless of race, gender, religion, or economic status. Its origins date back to French law and the principle of legality. A country that has a rule of law system is a nation where law governs all affairs and all people are treated equally.

There are many different concepts that are used to describe the Rule of Law. Many people believe that it is a purely formal ideal, while others believe that there is a substantive dimension to it. For instance, a common conception of Rule of Law includes the notion of generality, which contains the germ of justice. Other terms used to describe the Rule of Law include publicity, stability, and clarity, which indicate a connection between the Rule of Law and conditions of liberty.

Procedural aspects

Procedural aspects of law relate to the rules and procedures that courts use in adjudicating cases. These rules and procedures are meant to ensure that due process and fundamental justice are applied equally in all legal proceedings. Typically, procedural law is applied in the U.S. and other common law countries. In contrast, substantive law focuses on the claim or defense that is being litigated.

Substantive values

There is a long list of principles relating to the Rule of Law that are often broken down into procedural and substantive values. For example, legal philosophers like Lon Fuller have outlined eight formal principles of law. These principles include the absence of corruption, the independence of the judiciary, and the presumption of liberty.

These principles impose equal treatment for individuals. However, these principles are difficult to define in prescriptive terms. Therefore, the governing bodies should distinguish between formal and substantive equality. The former refers to the fact that all participants in a legal proceeding should receive the same benefits. On the other hand, substantive equality requires that a defendant not be disadvantaged in the law because of his or her gender.


The word “opponents of law” has several synonyms in a legal dictionary. For example, it is included in the American Encyclopedia of Law, the Asian Encyclopedia of Law, and the European Encyclopedia of Law. It also appears in the Latin American Encyclopedia of the Civil Code. Opponents of law are also listed in a legal abbreviation dictionary.