Peter J. Riga


The relationship between law and morality has never been terribly clear in the American mind. On one hand, there has been the attempt simply to identify the two. On the other hand, there has existed a deep suspicion of all attempts to relate the two. Traditional Western jurisprudence, at least before Austin, tried to follow a middle course between these two extremes. It is particularly important today, when law occupies such an important dimension in American life, that lawyers once again reexamine this relationship. Law is infinitely more than procedural technique; but it is something less than a religion or an ethical system. Law presupposes an ethical system and attempts to maintain and promote that system in the concrete lives of citizens. Law is, above all else, a teacher. This essential core of a legal system often is forgotten, to the confusion and detriment of that system.