The concept of Rule of Law supports the idea that every society must establish some type of legal order in order to limit the exercise of political power.
Thus, the rule of law is opposed to a society that has a complete legal system, which does not impose limits on its main political agents and who act outside the law.
The main objective of the Rule of Law is, therefore, to establish a series of legal norms that must be complied with by all citizens, so that everyone can receive exactly the same treatment under the Law.
Pillars of the Rule of Law
The rule of law is not a simple organizing principle, as it has a strong ethical charge. The four pillars that support it are the faithful reflection of this idea.
The first of these four pillars is contained in the supremacy of the Law as a reflection of the popular will. Then, we can mention the legal guarantee of freedom and rights for all citizens. The third pillar consists of the division of powers, with special relevance to the independence of the Judiciary. And finally, we are faced with the total submission of the Executive to the Law, better known as the rise of the principle of legality that allows the control of the executive and judicial powers to the administration in question.
Rule of Law and French Revolution
If there is a key date to understand the birth of the rule of law, it is undoubtedly the year 1789 with the beginning of the French Revolution. From there comes the idea that all citizens are equal.
The National Assembly , formed by representatives of all social classes, considered that the neglect of fundamental human rights was part of government corruption and other popular calamities, so that to contain this type of problem, a declaration of principles was proposed to consider the sacred rights of any human being, so that it would serve as a basis for the whole society of what were the real rights and obligations to be fulfilled by the executive and juridical powers. These basic and indisputable principles would be the pillar of the Constitution of 1798 whose objective was to guarantee the fulfillment of the rule of law.