Law for beginners - Part 3

To read PART 1, click here.
To read PART 2, click here.

This is a series of posts aiming to make the law more understandable to high schoolers. The target readers are junior high school and senior high school students who want to enter law school someday.

Each post has ten items. As the reader reads and jumps from part to part (from Part 1 to Part 2, Part 3, etc.), she is expected to start developing a clearer understanding of the role of law in our society and an understanding of what the law means and how the law applies to our everyday lives.

It is advised that each post be discussed by the reader with a law student, law graduate or a lawyer so that any question or confusion can be answered sufficiently. It is also recommended that the reader NOT proceed to the next parts unless and until the previous part is FULLY clear to her.

Let's start with Part 3.

[1] In the last two parts of this series, we discussed the complicated ideas behind the government of at least 100 people in our 100-person world. We also dove into some concepts like judicial power, executive power and legislative power. The last question was: "What is these leaders stay in power forever?"

[2] A power held for too long a time will eventually result in tyranny. That is why this 100-person world will sooner realize that their leaders should only stay in power temporarily.

Among them, they may agree that the Ruler will govern only for 10 years. The Law Writers will only govern for 15 years while the Deciders will stay in office until they die.

[3] Therefore, a new issue would be how to choose new leaders. In the past, human beings chose their leaders by instinct like that used by other forms of animals. For example, in baboons, they choose their leaders based on strength, teeth and fur. However, this 100-person world should depart from this barbaric system of choosing leaders. They will eventually realize that they should choose leaders based on skills.[4] But, who should choose? Should the strongest members of the society represent the weakest in choosing leaders? Or, should each member, weak or strong, poor or rich, cast one vote? Well, that is up for their society to decide.

[5] In the Philippines, we exercise the right to vote directly. We choose our President, Vice-President, Senators, Representatives and local government leaders by popular vote. In other countries like Japan, they do not directly vote for their Prime Minister; instead, they vote for minister-representatives who will later choose the state leader among themselves.

[6] In the past, aristocracy was a thing. Those who were on top of society (due to wealth, fame, intelligence, etc.) were the only ones allowed to vote because lower-class members of society were viewed not smart enough to be involved in government decisions.

[7] At this point, this 100-person world now, somehow, has a system of election and a system of government. They likewise now have term limits: 10 years for the Ruler; 15 years for Law Writers; and, a lifetime for Deciders. An inconvenience that will later on arise would be memory. Who can remember these rules? What if people start to forget the rules and later change them either intentionally or unintentionally?

[8] I suggest that the people should put their rules in writing, especially the rules on leadership.

[9] In the Philippines, we have the 1987 Constitution. The 1987 Constitution is the fundamental law which provides all the basic rules regarding the Government of the Republic of the Philippines and the rights of the people. Being in written form, the rules under our Constitution cannot simply be forgotten.

[10] In the next part (Part 4), we will start with a discussion about constitutions. Who wrote the Constitution? What is a constitution and its role? What happens if the 1987 Constitution is violated? In case of violation, where can we go for help?

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