Legal vs Ethical Standards || Term Paper

Legality versus Ethicality

Law is defined as a set of universally accepted rules and regulations that conduct created by a governing authority to guide the members on the acceptable way of life. On the other hand, ethics are principles that guide a society’s way of life in determining what is good and bad. However, the main distinction between the two is that laws are legally binding, while ethics are not binding (Ladd, 2017). This essay aims to discuss three social issues that face these conflicts between morality and legality.


Arguably, there is nothing ethically good or right from abortion since it involves taking away someone’s future without their express authorization. Even if the unborn child was a rape victim, the perpetrator was and will never be the unborn child, and therefore, there is no reason for them to be punished. As for doing what is good, other people opt to abort to prevent bringing a child to this world with full knowledge that taking care of them would be a challenge. However, in terms of laws of some countries, abortion is legal, and the justification is that the unborn child is not considered a living being, and therefore, not protected under the protection act (Drinan, 2016).

Pre-Marital Sex

Most cultures and religions across the world consider pre-marital sex, and generally sexual relations outside the confines of marriage to be ethically wrong. For instance, in Pakistan, there is a consistent view that pre-marital sex is morally unacceptable. A similar case is observed by the Japanese who consider any sexual relations between unmarried couples to be immoral. Nevertheless, no law explicitly states indulging in this activity is not acceptable.



According to most traditional cultures and most religions, homosexuality or same-sex relations is so immoral to an extent where those who may be inclined towards such relations are forced to do it without knowledge of even their parents and close relatives (Jäckle and Wenzelburger, 2015). Nonetheless, the issue legally acceptable in most countries, while others is in the process of making it legal.



Drinan, R. F. (2016). The Morality of Abortion Laws. The Catholic Lawyer14(3), 4.

Jäckle, S., & Wenzelburger, G. (2015). Religion, religiosity, and the attitudes toward homosexuality—A multilevel analysis of 79 countries. Journal of homosexuality62(2), 207-241.

Ladd, J. (2017). Legal and moral obligation. In Political and Legal Obligation (pp. 3-35). Routledge.