‘Injustice’ as an aspect that counts as ‘unjust’

 

‘Injustice’ is a loaded conception in its prescriptive
connotation. Something that is ‘unjust’ is a thought-provoking aspect about the
rule of law which has been debated upon by many scholars, researchers and
students to date since it touches the lives of humans on a daily basis. I
believe that something unjust implies an aspect or an action which is either
unmerited, unfair, inequitable, partial, underserved, unjustified, oppressive,
or discriminative to humans and animals. Specifically, injustice implies
morally unfair and unlawful. Therefore, something that is unjust may involve
direct or indirect discrimination which often arises from unfair procedures and
give rise to unfair conditions as well as social problems. Thus, this paper
aims at discussing indirect discrimination as one of the aspects that counts as
‘unjust.’

Indirect discrimination, as something that counts as
‘unjust,’ involves an action which is associated with a practice, rule or
policy which applies to every person in a similar approach. However, it has a
worse consequence or impact on some individuals than others. Therefore,
indirect discrimination puts an individual at a specific disadvantage while
others enjoy some specific opportunity or benefit which is supposed to be
provided to all when viewed from a moral perspective. Furthermore, indirect
discrimination counts as unjust since implies the disadvantaging in connection
with a specific benefit or advantage. Indirect discrimination emphasizes on
groups as well as group averages but disregards the dissemination of benefits and
harms within groups exposed to discrimination. Moreover, it emphasizes on strict
egalitarianism as the appropriate justification of distributive justice.

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A distinctive example which exemplifies indirect
discrimination as an aspect that counts as ‘unjust’ includes: Alex visits an
optician who pronounces a rule which permits payment for spectacles by
installments for employed individuals. The specific rule applies to all clients
irrespective of their protected characteristics which include age, disability,
beliefs or religion, sex, gender reassignment, race, civil partnership or
marriage, and sexual orientation. Therefore, the approach above includes the
pool for assessment and comparison. However, Alex is not employed since he is a
pensioner and hence he is not permitted to buy by installments. The approach
consequently places Alex at a disadvantage. Furthermore, it places other
pensioners who need to purchase spectacles by installments at a disadvantage.
Being a pensioner is associated with age as one of the protected
characteristics according to the Equality Act 2010 (Edge and Lucy 23). Thus
what Alex goes through is indirect discrimination, since one group of
individuals who share the protected characteristic of age are specifically
disadvantaged in association to another group of persons. Another specific
example of indirect discrimination is evident in the case whereby employees who
are Christians are forced to work on Sundays by their employers.  It is general knowledge that Sunday entails a
day of worship for most Christians. Thus, such a rule which forces staff to
report to work on Sunday puts most Christians at a specific disadvantage since
they are denied the opportunity to worship and practice their religious
beliefs. On the other hand, prohibiting headgear is indirect discrimination
since it would affect groups such as Sikhs. Moreover, imposing a specific
height prerequisite during police recruitment exercise which could disadvantage
women is also indirect discrimination. 

There are different reasons, evidence as well as arguments
which support the point of view that indirect discrimination counts as unjust.
For instance, The United Nations Human Rights Office of the High Commissioner’s
international convention on the elimination of all forms of discrimination
(1965) is based on equality principles inherent in all humans. The charter
promotes universal respect for fundamental freedom and human rights for
everyone without distinction as to sex, race, religion, and language. According
to the above United Nations Declaration, any rule founded on the racial, age,
sexual orientation, gender, and religious differentiation is morally condemnable,
dangerous, and unjust. Furthermore, United Nation Declaration articulates that
there is no justification for religious, sexual orientation, gender, age and
racial discrimination, in practice or theory, anywhere (Edge, & Lucy 56).
Hence, from the above articulation, it is evident that indirect discrimination
counts as unjust in almost all societies.

The Millennium Declaration recognizes the significance of
equality, human rights, as well as non-discrimination for progress by
articulating the fundamental human rights key principles. The fundamental human
rights emphasis on non-discrimination and equality is evidence that indirect
discrimination counts as unjust. Furthermore, the principles are legally
binding commitments and do not require justifications. Thus this is also
evidence that shows commitment to the fight against any form of discrimination.
The international law community and organizations such as the United Nations
have always been fighting against injustice in the society (Cottier and Oesch
23). Thus their fight against any form of discrimination an obvious argument
that indirect discrimination counts as unjust.

Indirect discrimination cannot count as unjust under
specific circumstances. According to The Equality Act, it is not indirect
discrimination when the individual applying the rule, policy or practice can
demonstrate there is a plausible reason for it. However, such an individual
would need to be in a position to prove that their practice, rule or policy does
not count as indirect discrimination in court, if compulsory, a phenomenon
which is referred to as objective justification (Edge and Lucy 67).

 

In conclusion, something which counts as unjust differs from
one individual to the other. Indirect discrimination may count as unjust or
just under different circumstance. Therefore, the ‘unjust’ is a
thought-provoking and loaded conception which requires proper interpretation
for better comprehension. 

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