Law, and culture

When it came to the movements and changes in the law, culture has always played a significant part. At different time periods, different layers/parts of culture has been more influential than others. For example, long time ago, just the exposure to other cultures were more significant; then, religion became more influential; later, the history has become the most deriving force.

The changes in the Law are inevitable: Because the amount or place of power change, people change, cultures change, and so the places change; hence, there would be a need of new laws, policies, rules and regulations.

Also in many countries, the law is one sided, so over time the law moves towards more balanced equilibrium.
And, this part is unfortunate but it is true, that like any other entity, the system tries to empower itself. The system is going to be biased and selfish for itself. The people in charge will try to gain more control. Like others, it is very natural for the system to take care of itself and help itself to grow larger and more powerful; so it will be comfortable with inaccurate assumptions as long as it is empowering itself.

And that is why in the graph, I have put the law aiming to be in the centre in its future; where there are more law than culture (the law layer is the thickest there), and then moving upwards trying to squeeze culture out as much as possible as it grows further!

That is why it is important to accept the laws that empower the people instead of any specific system! particularly if we do not want to kill all the cultures, and establish a futuristic movie like: robotic, grey coloured, uniform and linear, systematic life instead of cultures and with different ways of life and wide range of choices!

To clarify the above graph more, here are some very different countries in terms of law and also culture:

- when it comes to Kenya:

On 2010, the government had declared a legal constitution. However, to this day (April, 2016), the constitution is not being practiced really, and that is mainly due to their culture, which is the result of their history and being colonized.
Despite the fact that their constitution seems to be 'good', the level of stealing, corruption, and carelessness are one of the highest in the world. The level of poverty is great and the human rights are of the lowest in the world.
So it is evident that in this region, the main things that are affecting peoples' lives are first their history, and culture (which has become a new culture now) instead of law and order.
All this time, the constitution has been treated as a business goal, something to work towards to. This is absolutely unimaginable but it is the case. The law is just on the surface, and underneath everything is done according to certain people in charge, and their current culture.
Due to the history of hardship, the current atmosphere is very extreme (and in many aspects) and poor, resulting for many people in stealing as much as possible whenever possible!
The stealing is so infused in the culture that there are discussions about corruption at all times; also discussing how corruption is likely to be in their genes!
This hard atmosphere has become Kenya's culture for decades now! That is why many officials use their time desperately as their only window of opportunity to accumulate as much as wealth as possible, stealing whenever possible. Majority of rich people only think of themselves, totally taking advantage of the common people, and stealing whenever possible. And as a result, many common people when the opportunity arises, they steal too.

So the hard atmosphere, caused to use 'the opportunity to steal' to become a norm and everyone prone to take part in any corruption and cheating; also it is following with carelessness.
Now the Evil Arc of Stealing, Corruption, and Carelessness has been covering Kenya for many years now that it has become part of their culture. That is why, many have no regards for the law and legal ways of conducting themselves!

In recent years, once again Kenya's system has tried to portray a willingness towards becoming more legal than before. However, again the constitution is not being practiced, and there are bigger concerns now:
In the recent years, the government increased their national budget to over one Trillion, which was a big jump from their previous years and quite a record breaking. On 2015-2016, the government again took another leap and jumped to 2.1 Trillion!
So while the country is ranked the highest in corruption (and mainly stealing), is it wise to borrow more money and avail more money to be stolen, and leaving the country in a bigger debt?

Unfortunately, it is very evident that the practice of culture is much more dominant than the law as the culture affects the people, and the people enforce the law and or in this case ignore the law!
That is why on the graph, Kenya is placed where the effects of Culture are much more than the law. While there will be a bit of development/increase in the law, and on the surface mainly, the culture increase in significance and the history reduces (bearing in mind that history itself is a layer of culture itself).

- when it comes to Iran,

Again the Culture is more significant than the law. History layer has played a significant part in the changes of the law. Initially the system was of a Monarchy kind with its one sided inherited power. Due to its problems, and its critical exposures to other systems, and the religious people at the time, the system was suddenly and drastically changed to Islamic Republic with its laws based on a religious leaders, with certain people, and Koran (Ghoraan).

This is a place where Culture as a whole is more significant; but on the surface mainly Shia denomination of Islamic religion seems more visible. However, majority of the population have been of a younger age for awhile now, and majority of people seem to have enough of the religious government.
So just the age gap should have caused a significant changes in the law of the land! However, the system remains with its power and not changing to adjust to its culture really. A good example of a system as the main drive of the law! So despite the numbers, and despite the gap, the system remains with its strong government force and structure, continuing to rule the same and for decades now.
Nevertheless, Iran is showing some changes in the law, which will probably be of a higher acceleration compare to its past. This place can be very volatile and unpredictable in its future system due to many factors such as cultural differences and value gaps.

- when it comes to New Zealand,

Culture and history are more effective in the changes of the law. Again due to our history and being a British colony, many laws were British. As time goes, the laws are changing away from British ways / and or being of a traditional Colony. However, still being a colony, the culture and history are the main factors in changing the laws.
So this country remains behind in many ways. For example, a person gets much higher financial compensation in America than in New Zealand; and a person gets less welfare assistance than in Europe, etc. Like any other system, the government is very strong in New Zealand. The system is maturing steadily and slowly into taking care of itself, and growing itself and in a unique way. Unfortunately, the social problems such as racism, racial divides, social gaps, poverty, suicide, mental issues, and the general living standards are becoming worst as it grows. When it comes to New Zealand legislation, there are many factors which need to be discussed separately.

- when it comes to America,

Although there are many elements of culture and also the presence of history, the level of change in the law has been more than other countries. So it is portrayed that the law is practiced more than just enforcing things according to the culture or their history. Interestingly, as state to state vary in the law, so does the strength of culture in the law varries.
Overall, Unlike Kenya, America operates more on their constitution (the law) than culture; the influence of history and or culture has reduced significantly. However, due to their history and culture, many people particualry of African origin, continue to suffer and some continue to die!
The Bill of Rights already was influenced by the American culture and history. And hence thereafter, this Bill was always appreciated by their majority (culture), and so kind of upheld to this day (2015). This Bill has given many benefits to the common American people but mainly of white race. Nevertheless, all Americans have the rights to firearm. Also they can win a large sum of money as a compensation in a court. However, despite its constitution and the presevation of equality, many non-white civilians cannot get their rights!

Please note that this article is not complete and it is purely written for the purposes of the law discussion only.

Everyone is welcome to email me your comments in order to contribute to further develop this site only!
All students are encouraged to share this article with your class.
All teachers and lecturers are encouraged to contact me direct to arrange a time for a class discussion.

Good Laws improve our ways of life, being of a Simple, Finite, & Focused kind.

History becomes very significant in our Laws as it affects our Values and Characters, which are as important as the LAW of the land.

Ukes Baha