AbstractLegal coercion seems morally problematic because it is susceptible to the Hegelian objection that it fails to respect individuals in a way that is ‘due to them as men’. But in what sense does legal coercion fail to do so? And what are the grounds for this requirement to respect? This paper is an attempt to answer these questions. It argues that (a) legal coercion fails to respect individuals as reason-responsive agents; and (b) individuals ought to be respected as such in virtue of the fact that they are human beings. Thus it is in this sense that legal coercion fails to treat individuals with the kind of respect ‘due to them as men’.
Lee, Yuk Kong (2014) Legal Coercion, Respect & Reason-Responsive Agency Ethical Theory and Moral Practice, 17 (5). pp. 847-859.