The link between law, democracy, government policy, and employee behavior
For years society has been governed by various concepts and values, for example, law, democracy and governmental policy serve the same purpose to guide and limit the behavior and practices of the people. These concepts and values have a huge effect on two areas (1) the people in terms of the criminal justice system, and (2) the direct involvement with the private sector, which employs majority amount of the workforce in the United States, for example the employee’s behavioral practices. The definition of these concepts is important to learn how law, democracy, government policy and employee’s behavior concepts are linked.
Law is a system of rules and regulations, used to govern the people, and businesses within the public and private sector, usually enforced through a set of institutions. Law shapes our politics, economy, and society in various ways also serves as a primary social mediator of relations between people. As a huge judiciary body, Law is the highest authority, which individuals and organizations must obey, comply, accept, and covers all aspects and issues requiring attention to provide orderly discipline. Law allows citizens to live in a safe and secure environment and provides justice to those wronged by others, and protect citizens from injustice and crime.
With the laws prevailing in contemporary times, people and organizations also take note that how important it is to comply with the civil laws for a healthy society. Law is a mechanism, which is applied and implemented in several areas of socio-economic and in detecting crimes, fixing punishments, penalties, or any rehabilitation resources. International Court of Justice is the highest legal body, which is authorized to grant decrees for international crimes such as terrorism, international conspiracy, espionage, or corruption in economy.
The rule of law is a political ideal that triumphs under the characteristics of an efficient system of government like publicity and transparency in public administration, universal and perspective enforcement of norms in society, the predictable social environment, which aided by norms in its formation, the operational equity in the administration, the independence and accountability of the judicial system. Basically, this concept perceives the world in which people in authority exercise their power within a limited framework. The exercise of power is constrained by public rules that prohibit them from making decisions based on their own preferences, ideology, and judgment of right from wrong. Democracy is defined by Thomas Jefferson as the government “deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed. A world without law is both chaotic and deteriorating in human values.
According to Smith (2004),”Democracy is a political government carried out either directly by the people or by means of elected representatives of the people. Even though there is no specific, universally accepted definition of democracy, there are two principles that any definition of democracy includes: equality and freedom. These principles are reflected in all citizens being equal before the law and have equal access to power and the freedom of its citizens is secured by legitimized rights and liberties, which are generally protected by a Constitution.”
Democracy gives importance to the opinion of the people, which the government is serving. The authority of the government comes from the people because in most democratic societies the public is the one responsible in putting these officials in the seat of power.
The idea of democracy gives importance to the opinion of those the government is serving, which are the country’s citizens. The legitimacy of government officials is also seen through the consent of the people who voted for them. Moreover, because democracy gives premium to the opinion of the public, reaches a consensus through a majority vote.
“There are several varieties of democracy, some of which provide better representation and more freedoms for their citizens than others. However, if any democracy is not carefully legislated through the use of balances to avoid an uneven distribution of political power, such as the separation of powers, then a branch of the system of rule could accumulate power and become harmful to the democracy itself” (Smith, 2004).
A society that trust leads to a better government and to a public that is happier with government performance or maybe good government makes people more likely to trust each other or perhaps both.
“Political life and trust have an uneasy relationship with each other. Some people say that the state can build trust. By ensuring that people can’t get away with cheating each other, and violating the law the state can create respect for authority” (Brehm & Rahn, 1997).
According to the article How Governmental Policy is made (2005), defines policy as a specific course or way of action that is chosen from various alternatives, which also aid in identifying present as well as future decisions. Policy can also be described as a decision making process, which mirrors the values that one upholds. Being the case, policy represents a specific political, ethical, or programmatic perspective. In line with this, government policy could be defined as theoretical or experiential assumptions about what is needed to solve a specific issue or dilemma.
“Government’s major priorities are to promote democracy and control crime. Law enforcement has a major role in both areas. In order to thrive, a democratic government must create an effective democratic police agency that can protect life and property” (Close, 2003) to enforce the rule of law, and protect human rights. “Protecting life and property involves controlling crime, which requires strengthening police agencies to effectively detect, investigate, and forward for prosecution those involved in crime. Effective police forces serve their domestic law enforcement needs and become an effective partner with” (ICITAP, 2010) the criminal justice system.
The courts and correctional agencies bear an equal burden and responsibility to continue the justice process and to fulfill the roles necessary to process and protect the rights of the accused, determine the guilt of offenders, and subsequently see to their disposition in terms of punitive sanctions, supervision, incarceration, and rehabilitative programming.
Legal values and ethical considerations both define and constrain the limits of action to be taken in the name of justice. “All criminal justice and security personnel can contribute to bringing about democratic political development by supporting the following norms: (1) be responsive to needs, concerns, and interests of the citizens, (2) be accountable to the rule of law and know how to apply the law (3) protect human rights and freedoms established by the laws, and (4) open activities and rules for public debate by operating transparently there is less room for improprieties at all levels” (ICITAP, 2010).
A Government policy will contain the what, why, the how, the where, and the when concepts. Although law prohibits behaviors and a policy is used to guide actions toward those concepts most likely to achieve a desired outcome. When law, democracy, and government policy are combined a legal system of rules of rights and responsibilities is formed pertaining to every individual, therefore when government policies are designed the system of rules helps ensure these policies remain equal to all individuals. Then add employee behavior into the equation you have a set of rules being illustrated in policies for which everyone must follow whether he or she disagrees with the policy.
Behavior refers to the manner by which an individual acts or control oneself. Behavior is the way by which a person relates with other people around one’s environment. Thus, employee behavior pertains to the attitude of an employee with his or her employer and his or her working environment. Employees will have a positive attitude as long as they believe his or her employer treating him or her equal to others within the company. Law and democracy play a major role when ensuring a positive behavior because the two working together ensures equal rights and responsibilities to everyone.
While writing this paper, I learned how law, democracy, government policy, and employees behavior, are linked. The law elaborates the rights and responsibilities of the people, democracy reflects that everyone is treated equal in a court of law and have equal access to power and the freedom of its citizens is secured by legitimized rights and liberties, which are generally protected by a Constitution.
(2005) “How Governmental Policy is made” Best Practice Beliefs, (34), Retrieved March 18, 2010 from http://outreach.msu.edu/bpbriefs/issues/brief34.pdf
(2010) International Criminal Investigative Training Assistance Program Retrieved March 18, 2010 from http://www.usdoj.gov/criminal/icitap/transitionToDemocraticPolicing.ht
Brehm, John and Wendy Rahn (1997) “Individual Level Evidence for the Causes and Consequences of Social Capital,” Retrieved March 18, 2010
Smith, C. E. (2004) “The Definition of Constitutional Rights” Constitutional Rights: Myths and Realities Retrieved March 18, 2010