The history and interpretations of justice.
“Justice is generally understood to mean what is right, fair, appropriate, deserved. Justice is achieved when an unjust act is redressed and the victim feels whole again. Justice also means the offender is held accountable for his behavior.” – source
The Missouri Coalition Against Domestic and Sexual Violence.
The idea of justice can range from the biblical notion of an eye for an eye to the idea that when the Exxon Valdez dumped millions of barrels of oil along the Alaskan coastline that the company should pay the residents punitive damages for destroying their way of life.
What is Justice?
“Justice, in a functional form, is the idea that, within the same value scope (e.g. moral, ethical, etc) of the infringement, those who commit a wrong in a value system are entitled to receive a similar or related amount of action within the same system/means, and that receipt is except from being considered wrong. Given this, we can understand justice as being a form of societal defense mechanism, allowing a society to purge itself of elements it does not accept without running into problems of the legitimacy of the purge.”- source
Yet despite the basic idea that most people have of justice, it is different in different circumstances for different people.
In general, justice is meant more for the society as a whole than for the individual victims because it is designed to prove repeatedly that people are safe within their society. They can feel that if they ever are victims of crimes, the criminals will be caught, tried and punished. It gives the victim closure, but in a larger sense, it gives society closure of a particular chapter and allows the people within the society to move ahead in their lives feeling they are safe, that even if not all is well, criminals are caught and removed from the streets.