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Law and Order: The Heart of Democracy

By, Peter Burnett | Attorney, Leesburg

Thomas Jefferson, Charlottesville, VA. Photo by Phil Roeder

When we celebrate Independence Day we are celebrating a reordering of civil society in 1776 that was based on two main things: inalienable human rights, and the rule of law. When America proclaimed its independence from King George, the founding fathers moved to set up an intricate system of laws to protect individuals from the capricious whims of unfettered power. On every level, from local towns to the federal government, social order was established by democratic vote and maintained by an independent judiciary.

As attorneys, it is our privilege and duty to participate in the system that is the backbone of our democracy. On every case, we work to fairly apply the laws of the Commonwealth and advance the rights of each client. In personal injury law, we make sure the system works as well for the individual injury victims as it does for the large insurance companies.  

When I see the flag flying on Independence Day, I feel fortunate to live in a society in which all of us have strong recourse under the law. The history of America is a long effort to live up to our founding principles and ensure that all individuals are treated equally. We are not always perfect, but we are always striving to be better. As a Virginia attorney, I’ve always taken pride in playing my part in helping to advance the orderly system of laws first established so many years ago.