Law Research Proposal Sample
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'When should the moral burden of human compassion supersede the rule of law and exclusive powers of state in world event?
The rule of law is known to be the principle in which the government authority is legitimately exercised if and only if it is in accordance with written, publicly disclosed laws adopted and implement within an established procedure. Such principle is intended to be a defense against arbitrary governance. One of the simplest and most enduring versions of the idea of the rule of law centres on an evocative but impossible ideal: 'the rule [or government] of law[s], not the rule of men' (or of women, or indeed of any fallible mortals). Taken literally, this is nonsense. Laws are not and cannot be self-creating or self-enforcing edicts. Unlike the laws of gravity or thermodynamics, they need human beings to create, interpret and enforce them. A more feasible meaning for this ideal is that all humans (especially officials of the state) are subject to law.
Sovereign authorities rule through human beings, but the rule of law ensures that the process is, as far as possible, channelled through the means of rule making and attempts at faithful rule implementation. In other words, it ensures that individual citizens have a fair warning before they break a law and a fair hearing afterwards. They are not simply punished without any (or with insufficient) regard to the laws at the time they acted.
In different events and happenings in the world, there is a growing issue on identifying when the moral burden of human compassion should overtake the rule of law and exclusive powers of state. Primarily, the main goal of this paper is to investigate on when the moral burden of human compassion supersede the rule of law specifically in the case of Darfur Crisis in Darfur, Sudan Africa.
In this research paper literature review, the purpose of the study and the research statement of the problems are formulated. Here, vital concepts, questions and assumptions are cited. Finally, overview of the methodology to be used and the possible outcome of the research will be sighted.
Background of the Study
Throughout the years there has been an ever-increasing conflict in Sudan Africa. One of the conflicts faced by the Sudan Africa is the crisis that is happening in Darfur. In February 2003, the low-level violence which had been characterised Darfur ten years ago exploded onto the world. As noted, Darfur is regarded as ethnic mosaic which is composed of different ethnic groups such as the Fur, the Zaghawa, the Zeyadiyya, the Masalitthe Baggara, the Rizeigat and others. Such groups are all subdivided. For example, the Rizeigat are consists of a cattle herding and the camel-herding section in the southern part and the Abbala sub-division in the north.
Accordingly, the conflict began in 2003 because of the intensive movement of Um Jalul. In this regard, there has been an intermarriage of different clans which made the Darfur people claim multiple identities. Because of this, there exist many political and traditional leaders who have been the vital factor have having clan clash in Darfur. Many of the young men in this region had gone to fight on the side of the government in the long civil war in Southern Sudan. Since 2003 there have been conflicts in Darfur even if leaders are doing their best to find a solution for this problem. The military government of the northern part of Sudan increasingly turned to a small division of ethnic groups in Darfur which brings more crises to the region.
Objectives of the Study
The general objective of this study is to investigate when the moral burden of human compassion supersede the rule of law provided by the sovereign states. In particular, this proposed study seeks to achieve the following objectives.
1. Examine the concepts of rule of law.
2. Review related literature about how human compassion overtakes the rule of law.
3. To know the perception of different people regarding the topic.
4. To investigate about the implications of having a citizen that can overtake the rule of law.
The focus of this problem statement is to determine when the human compassion can supersede the rule of law and how it can be done. Currently, there are limited studies that provide a definitive answer regarding this issue specifically in the African regions. The researcher is hopeful that this study will yield a significant result in terms identifying the reasons how human rights supersede rule of law. Specifically, the researcher will answer the following questions:
1. What is the perception of African regarding the superseding of the rule of laws?
2. What are the common ways that people can do to overpower the rule of law?
3. What are the influencing factors that caused people to supersede rule of law and the exclusive powers of the states?
4. What is the impact of having a rule of law which has been superseded by human compassions
5. How do governments intervene in the situation of Darfur?
All societies are constantly surrounded with conflicts of varying aspects, be it political, economic or human. The worst outcome that can be derived from these conflicts would probably be violence. Thus, in order to prevent the situation from leading to this last resort, effective interventions must be done. The next question would possibly be who are to be responsible for these interventions and how are they going to formulate them.
Casualties from ethnic conflicts and inter-country wars have been surging around the world. According to Shawcross (2000), the civil wars that are happening in the world are mainly the result of intra-state conflict and/or ethnic violence and are often characterized by the collapse of state institutions and the breakdown of law and order. As a result, this has lead to humanitarian crisis particularly in the parts of Africa. However, what underlies the humanitarian intervention debate is a perceived tension between the values of ensuring respect for fundamental human rights and the primacy of the norms of sovereignty, non-intervention, and self determination which are considered essential factors in the maintenance of peace and international security.
The past decade has seen a dramatic increase in the willingness of the international community to involve itself in the domestic affairs of states where those states are the sites of egregious violations of international law. Humanitarian intervention has taken place both under the auspices of the United Nations (U.N.) as well as unilaterally by one or more states, and these actions have spurred much debate regarding their legality in light of the well-established international legal prohibition on the use of force. Though the debate continues, there are still no established international legal guidelines specifically applicable to such interventions, and the interveners do not abide by existing international legal norms regulating armed conflict. Thus, humanitarian occurs on an ad hoc and inconsistent basis and almost without bounds.
Humanitarian intervention is the term used to describe armed intervention by the United Nations, a coalition of outside states, or a single outside state, into another state to prevent widespread human rights violations or a massive humanitarian crisis.
There is a general consensus that the international system has changed substantially from 1990 and onwards. As a result, the character of international relations, civil war dynamics, and the framework for humanitarian action have changed. Accordingly, the nature of humanitarian action in response to such crises has changed too. Thus, the post-Cold War world provided a new framework for intervention in intrastate conflicts.
A significant feature of this new framework was the new humanitarian imperative to save the victims of the so-called complex emergencies, formed by a new consensus within the United Nations. This "new room" for manoeuvre by the "humanitarian international community," was primarily exercised within the auspices of the United Nations Security Council. However, International NGOs (INGOs) have also gained an increasingly important role as agents for the international community's humanitarian concerns. The result has been an internationalization of civil wars by the events of humanitarian assistance and military intervention on the behalf of the international community.
The failures, mixed experiences, and disputed legitimacy of these interventions, notably in Iraq, Bosnia, Somalia and Rwanda, attracted immense public attention and prompted a long array of questions within the public and academic debates. This comprehensive interest for HAI has, in the last five years, been reflected in a rather varied and extensive number of articles and books. To understand this debate is not an easy task, not only by virtue of the amount of publications, but very much because of the complex interconnectedness of relevant issues from the operational level, moral and ethical values to the application of different theories of international relations.
Furthermore, the concept of humanitarian intervention is problematical. Thus, the complexity of humanitarian intervention and the various forms of humanitarian action are discussed and the key issues of providing relief are presented. Finally, Joanna Macrae (1996) in her background paper "The Origins of Unease: Setting the Context for the Current Ethical Debate" outlines the moral and ethical issues which the negative experiences of humanitarian interventions have raised.
The event of humanitarian intervention has also confused the concept about humanitarian assistance. Usually the concept humanitarian intervention refers to actions undertaken by the international community within the territory of a given state in order to protect and defend human rights of the population in cases of massive violations. Humanitarian military intervention refers to the situations where military forces are applied to achieve such protection, whereas humanitarian intervention also covers the political and diplomatic aspect of humanitarian intervention.
However, humanitarian assistance has increasingly during the 1990's been associated with military protection as humanitarian assistance has come under physical attack during CPEs. Thus, the term humanitarian intervention may be obscured by having two dimensions. The first is the protection of humanitarian assistance deliveries and the victims of conflict, the second is the deliverance of humanitarian assistance.
Human Rights and Rule of Law
Although law and legal forms play a central role in facilitating and warranting the global exchange of persons, capital, and culture, the place of justice in this world order is not clear. Advancing human rights demands its own law, one that is independent of national law and sometimes deliberately at odds with states. A movement on behalf of indigenous peoples seeks to establish a universal declaration of such rights, quite independent of the law established by conquering colonial powers.
The United States (along with other leading Western powers) has claimed a commitment to human rights and has challenged other countries on human rights issues, but this posture is hypocritical given its own dismal historical record on the implementation of such rights. In a parallel vein, global authorities in hypocrisy by campaigning against many forms of regulatory law in Western developed nations, while calling for adherence to "the rule of law" in developing nations. The perspective on law has been narrowly focusing on the rule of law and has failed to recognize the protection of human rights and of settled indigenous communities as legitimate purposes of law. In one interpretation, the rule of law can play a role in allowing and warranting the disadvantaged to protect them from abuse. Law can thus serve a positive function by insisting that human rights be incorporated into government policies and those of international financial institutions, demanding the inclusion of human rights in international treaties, and requiring transnational corporations to conduct themselves in line with international human rights law.
Overview of Methodology
This study will be conducted in order to investigate when human empathy and consideration supersede the rule of law and the power of the state. In this proposed research, the descriptive method will be utilized. According to Creswell (1994), the descriptive method of research is to gather information about the present existing condition. Thus, this method is the most appropriate for the study. Two types of data will be used: the primary and the secondary data. The primary data will be derived from the answers respondents will give in the structured questionnaire prepared by the researcher. In addition, the information obtained from the interview will also provide primary research data that will support the study. The secondary data on the other hand, will be derived from the findings stated in published documents and literatures related to the research problem. These will be based from the recent literatures related steroids and athletic performance.
In terms of approach, the study will employ both qualitative and quantitative approaches. The qualitative approach will focus on the numerical findings obtained from the survey used in the research process. The interview on the other hand will make up the qualitative approach of the study as this will focus on personal accounts, behavioral and learning observations as well as on opinions and individual insights. This study will also employ qualitative research method as it will attempt to find and build concepts that will explain the relationship of one variable with another variable through qualitative elements in research.
Through this method, qualitative elements that do not have standard measures such as behavior, attitudes, opinions, and beliefs within the problem domain will be analyzed. Employing both qualitative and quantitative methods will help in ensuring reliable results. Furthermore, this strategy will help in overcoming the limitations of either approach.
For this research design, the researcher will gather data, collate published studies from different local and foreign universities and articles from social science journals; and make a content analysis of the collected documentary and verbal material related human rights and rules of law. Afterwards, the researcher will summarise all the information, make a conclusion based on the null hypotheses posited and provided insightful recommendations regarding the topic. The quantitative and qualitative research techniques that will be employed in this present study are discussed in detail below.
The researcher will design a questionnaire for the survey. The primary aim of the questionnaire is to determine when human consideration can overpower the rule of law. This research will use a mixture of closed questions and more open comments in the questionnaire. A closed question is one that has pre-coded answers. The simplest is the dichotomous question to which the respondent must answer yes or no.
Through closed questions, the researcher will be able to limit responses that are within the scope of this study. For example, the researcher intends to ask the respondents what they think of the rule of law and human rights in general. Using a multiple choice method, the answer of the respondents would be within the one of the limited expected answers of the researcher. Thus the researcher will design a closed question type to remain focused on the statement of the problem and on the main purpose of the study. However, the researcher will nevertheless extend the closed questions with the comments option to be able to gather qualitative data for this study.
In addition, closed questions will be used in the survey because the answers are easy to analyse and are straightforward as target respondents are mostly busy that they do not have enough time to give attention to open questions. Closed response questions save the respondent having to think of possible replies.
The questionnaire-survey will collect data on the respondents’ demographic profile first to check that the sample is appropriately stratified and representative and second to provide further information about the sample for analysis purposes. To determine whether steroids can enhance athletic performance, , the researcher will prepare a questionnaire and a set of guide questions for the interview that will be asked to the intended respondents. The data collection instrument will be a structured questionnaire that will be designed and based on Likert scale. A Likert Scale is a rating scale that requires the subject to indicate his or her degree of agreement or disagreement with a statement. Ideally, the respondents will grade each statement in the survey-questionnaire using a Likert scale with a five-response scale wherein respondents will be given five response choices.
The equivalent weights for the answers will be:
4.50 – 5.00 Strongly Agree
3.50 – 4.00 Agree
2.50 – 3.49 Uncertain
1.50 – 2.49 Disagree
0.00 – 1.49 Strongly Disagree
The researcher opted to use the questionnaire as a tool since it is easy to construct having the rules and principles of construction are easy to follow. Moreover, copies of the questionnaire could reach a considerable number of respondents either by mail or by personal distribution. Generally, responses to a questionnaire are objectified and standardised and these make tabulation easy. But more importantly, the respondents’ replies are of their own free will because there is no interviewer to influence them. This is one way to avoid biases, particularly the interviewers’ bias. The researcher will also use graph and charts for data presentation.
Respondents of the Study
In this research paper, it is important to distinguish and determines the respondents of the study. In this manner, the researcher will have the respondents through a sample. Sample is known as a predetermined element of a statistical population that undergoes specific study. In conducting a research this population is called a set of respondents that has been selected from a greater number of populations for survey purposes. Population is defined as a set of categorized group that can be people, objects or any items from which the selection can be made to be used in statistical treatment such as a group of young individuals, manager and literary books. Herein, the researcher will used the sampling method which is defined as a strategic way of choosing the most appropriate sample or the most suitable part of the population for determination of the characteristics or restriction.
After selecting the appropriate population, the researcher will use inferential statistics in order to draw a concrete conclusion. Inferential statistics is used to be able to know a population’s attribution through a direct observation of the chosen population or simply the sample. This is because it is easier to observe a portion or a part than observe the whole population. However using a sample has also its own disadvantages; hence there is a need to choose the most suitable sample from any population. The researcher plans to take a sample population of 50 respondents
Validity of the Data
For validation purposes, the researcher will initially submit a sample of the set of survey questionnaires and after approval; the survey will be conducted to five respondents. After the questions were answered, the researcher will ask the respondents for any suggestions or any necessary corrections to ensure further improvement and validity of the instrument. The researcher will again examine the content of the interview questions to find out the reliability of the instrument. The researchers will exclude irrelevant questions and will change words that would be deemed difficult by the respondents, too much simpler terms.
Administration of the Instrument
The researcher will exclude the five respondents who will be initially used for the validation of the instrument. The researcher will also tally, score and tabulate all the responses in the provided interview questions. Moreover, structured interview will be used in this research study. Structured interview is a kind of interview that promotes a question and answer process. It is composed of a detailed explicit questions and the researcher shall divert from putting or adding any other comment while the process of interviewing is being conducted. In addition, the researcher must be able to let the interviewee to elucidate further those unclear statements. However, the interviewer must see to it that the process should remain objective rather than subjective and that he/she does not have any right to state his/her own opinions and ideas so as not to influence the answers or comments of the interviewee.
Creswell, J.W. (1994) Research design. Qualitative and quantitative approaches. Sage: Thousand Oaks, California.
Danish Institute of International Affairs. (1999) Humanitarian Intervention: Legal and Political Aspects, Submitted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Denmark, December 7 (called the "Danish Institute Report").
Greider, William (2000a). "Global Agenda." The Nation (January 31): 11-16.
Halinel, Robin (2000).”Globalisation: Beyond Reaction, Thinking Ahead." New Politics Vol. 8, pp. 31-42.
Henkin, L. (1993) International Law: cases and materials. 930 (3d ed. 1993).
Kevane, M. (2006). Explaining the Crisis in Darfur: Background and Context.
Macrae, Joanna (1996) The Origins of Unease : Setting the Context of the Current Ethical Debate, Background Paper I for the Forum on Ethics in Humanitarian Aid, Dublin 9-10 December, 1996.
Marcus, M. (2002) Humanitarian Intervention without Borders: Belligerent Occupation or Colonization? Houston Journal of International Law. Volume: 25. Issue: 1 99+.
Mayall, James (ed.) (1996) The New Interventionism, 1991-1994, Cambridge University Press
McCorquodale, Robert and Richard Fairbrother (1999). “Globalisation and Human Rights." Human Rights Quarterly Vol. 21: pp. 735-766.
Nederveen Pieterse, Jan (ed) (1998), World Orders in the Making, Humanitarian Intervention and Beyond, Institute of Social Studies, Macmillan
Parekh, Bhikhu (1998) Rethinking Humanitarian Intervention, pp.138-169 in Nederveen Pieterse, Jan (ed 1998), World Orders in the Making, Humanitarian Intervention and Beyond, Institute of Social Studies, Macmillan
Shawcross, W. (2000) Deliver Us from Evil, Simon and Schuster, New York.
Silbey, S Silbey. (1997) "'Let Them Eat Cake': Globalisation, Postmodern Colonialism and the Possibilities of Justice." Law & Society 31: 207-235.
Slim, Hugo (1997) Relief Agencies and Moral Standing in War : Principles of Humanity, Neutrality, Impartiality and Solidarity, pp.342-352 in Development in Practice : an Oxfam Journal, Vol. 7, No. 4
Teubner, Gunther (1997). "The King's Many Bodies: The Self-Deconstruction Of Law's Hierarchy." Law & Society Review 31: 763-788.
Weiss, Thomas G. (1998) Humanitarian Action i War Zones : Recent Experience and Future Research, pp.24-79 in Nederveen Pieterse, Jan (ed) (1998), World Orders in the Making, Humanitarian Intervention and Beyond, Institute of Social Studies, Macmillan.
 Kevane, M. (2006). Explaining the Crisis in Darfur: Background and Context.
 Danish Institute of International Affairs. (1999) Humanitarian Intervention: Legal and Political Aspects, Submitted to the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Denmark, December 7 (called the "Danish Institute Report").
 Marcus, M. (2002) Humanitarian Intervention without Borders: Belligerent Occupation or Colonization? Houston Journal of International Law. Volume: 25. Issue: 1, 99+.
 Henkin, L. (1993) International Law: cases and materials. 930 (3d ed. 1993).
 Weiss, Thomas G. (1998) Humanitarian Action i War Zones : Recent Experience and Future Research, pp.24-79 in Nederveen Pieterse, Jan (ed) (1998), World Orders in the Making, Humanitarian Intervention and Beyond, Institute of Social Studies, Macmillan
 Mayall, James (ed.) (1996) The New Interventionism, 1991-1994, Cambridge University Press
 Slim, Hugo (1997) Relief Agencies and Moral Standing in War : Principles of Humanity, Neutrality, Impartiality and Solidarity, pp.342-352 in Development in Practice : an Oxfam Journal, Vol. 7, No. 4
 Nederveen Pieterse, Jan (ed) (1998), World Orders in the Making, Humanitarian Intervention and Beyond, Institute of Social Studies, Macmillan
 Macrae, Joanna (1996) The Origins of Unease : Setting the Context of the Current Ethical Debate, Background Paper I for the Forum on Ethics in Humanitarian Aid, Dublin 9-10 December, 1996.
 Parekh, Bhikhu (1998) Rethinking Humanitarian Intervention, pp.138-169 in Nederveen Pieterse, Jan (ed 1998), World Orders in the Making, Humanitarian Intervention and Beyond, Institute of Social Studies, Macmillan
 Silbey, S Silbey. (1997) "'Let Them Eat Cake': Globalisation, Postmodern Colonialism and the Possibilities of Justice." Law & Society 31: 207-235.
 Teubner, Gunther (1997). "The King's Many Bodies: The Self-Deconstruction Of Law's Hierarchy." Law & Society Review 31: 763-788.
Halinel, Robin (2000).”Globalisation: Beyond Reaction, Thinking Ahead." New Politics Vol. 8, pp. 31-42.
 Greider, William (2000a). "Global Agenda." The Nation (January 31): 11-16.
 McCorquodale, Robert and Richard Fairbrother (1999). “Globalisation and
Human Rights." Human Rights Quarterly Vol. 21: pp. 735-766.
 Creswell, J.W. (1994) Research design. Qualitative and quantitative approaches. Sage: Thousand Oaks, California.
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