If you have an opinion on this post, congratulations, you’re doing natural law

A dear friend, who has done premier work in the neural sciences and several books on philosophical psychology, remarked that he wanted, as the epitaph on his gravestone, "He died without a theory." A former colleague of mine remarked that I had a "theory" of natural law. But I can join my friend in saying that I, too, have no "theory." To say that someone has a "theory" of natural law is to suggest that an observer, looking on, can see played out before him people seized with "theories" – that he may stand there, in a wholesome detachment, seeing theories of various sorts whizzing past. From that vantage point we are encouraged to make judgments about the theories, or fragments of theories, that are plausible or implausible, right or wrong, true or false. I said then: Just tell me the ground on which you are making those judgments about the theories that are plausible or implausible, true or false, and you would have been led back to the ground of what I understand as the natural law.

— Hadley Arkes, Constitutional Illusions and Anchoring Truths: The Touchstone of the Natural Law

Tim Kowal

Tim Kowal is a husband, father, and attorney in Orange County, California, Vice President of the Orange County Federalist Society, commissioner on the OC Human Relations Commission, and Treasurer of Huntington Beach Tomorrow. The views expressed on this blog are his own. You can follow this blog via RSS, Facebook, or Twitter. Email is welcome at timkowal at gmail.com.