While such rules of conducts may be developed and applied differently by different societies, the objective is simply the same. to protect the fundamental rights of individuals within the society (Grant, 1987 p12). Therefore, this essay will argue on the role and importance of law, as advocated for by two different scholars, namely Thomas Hobbes and John Locke.
The prime essence of law in the society is to regulate social behavior (Brown, 1965 p7). Without laws, it could be difficult to regulate the social behavior of individuals, since people vary depending on their natural abilities, social orientations, cultural foundations and generic makeup. Therefore, it is natural that some individuals in any society are weaker than others, and thus needs to be protected from exploitation by the other individuals who are dominant in various aspects (Tarcov, 1984 p11). However, according to Thomas Hobbes, who was a renowned English philosopher, the major problem that exists in the world is that of establishing political and social order (Dietz, 1990 p114). Therefore, the fundamental question regarding social interaction is on how people can live together, without the danger and fear of conflict. This forms the basis of his Moral and Political Philosophy, which postulates that to realize peaceful coexistence in the society full of undue danger and fear of conflict, people should give their obedience to an unaccountable sovereign, which could take the form of an individual or a group that is vested with the powers of deciding on the political and social issues facing the society (Collins, 2005 p45). This point to the inevitable need for some form of law that is vested on certain social institutions, which have the powers to interpret and apply the laws for the common benefit of the society and al individuals, who have committed their obedience to such institutions.
Thus according to Thomas Hobbes, the need for law in the society stems from the fact that