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Question: Explain the precept of Mortimer j. Adler regarding justice: "treat equals equally and unequal unequally in proportion to their inequality". And give examples
Mortimer J. Adler's idea regarding justice, "Treat equals equally and unequal unequally in proportion to their inequality," is a theory rooted in the concept of justice as fairness. It implies two underlying aspects of justice, which include distributive justice (allocation of rewards/resources among members of a society) and corrective justice (corrective measures in response to unfair situations). 1. **Equal Treatment for Equals**: This means people in the same circumstances should be treated the same way. For instance, in a workplace, two employees who are doing the same job, with the same experience, skills, and expertise, should be paid the same wage. If one of them is paid more only due to a preferred race, gender, or personal feelings, it violates the equal treatment principle. 2. **Unequal Treatment in Proportion to Inequality**: This aspect implies that people in different circumstances should be treated differently, but in proportion to their differing circumstances. This is the basis for progressive taxation, where richer people pay more taxes than poorer people, as their ability to contribute is greater. It doesn't mean taxing wealthy people to the point of bankruptcy, but taxing them according to their ability. Similarly, in education, students with disabilities receive additional resources to ensure they have the same opportunities as other students. In essence, Adler's precept of justice is about validating differences and similarities where they exist. It’s not about treating everyone identically, but rather, ensuring fair treatment taking into account the circumstances. It refutes the idea that one-size-fits-all, while advancing the idea of individual circumstances and a proportional response to inequality.
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