The rule of law also requires that people be able to expect predictable outcomes from the legal system; This is what Justice Wood suggests when she says that «laws must not be arbitrary.» Predictable results mean that people who act in the same way can expect the law to treat them the same. If similar actions do not lead to similar legal outcomes, people cannot use the law to guide their actions, and a «rule of law» does not exist. There have been several attempts to create «a generally acceptable definition of the law.» In 1972, Baron Hampstead suggested that no such definition could be created. [30] McCoubrey and White said that the question «What is the law?» has no simple answer. [31] Glanville Williams said that the meaning of the word «law» depends on the context in which the word is used. He said that, for example, «primitive customary law» and «municipal law» are contexts in which the word «law» has two distinct and incompatible meanings. [32] Thurman Arnold said that it is obvious that it is impossible to define the word «law» and that it is equally obvious that the struggle to define this word should never be abandoned. [33] Presumably, it is not necessary to define the word «law» (e.g., «Forget about the general public and come to business»). [34] The rule of law is a term that is often used, but difficult to define. A common saying is that the rule of law means the government of the law, not men. But what is meant by «a government of the law, not the people»? The philosophy of law is commonly referred to as jurisprudence. Normative jurisprudence asks «What should law be?», while analytical jurisprudence asks «What is law?» The law is good, it is necessary, its enforcement is bad, and customs judges laws on the basis of how they are enforced.

[44] The law is important because it serves as a guideline for what is accepted in society. Without them, there would be conflicts between social groups and communities. It is crucial that we follow them. The law allows easy adaptation to the changes that occur in society. Many laws are specifically designed to protect certain groups of people. Laws such as the Civil Rights Act (United States) and the Sex Discrimination Act (Australia) make discrimination illegal. These types of laws protect so-called «negative rights,» that is, the right to be free from something like discrimination. Anyone can be discriminated against, but as history shows, some people are more at risk. Laws to prevent discrimination based on race, sex, gender, religion and more protect these groups and give them better access to justice. The independence of the judiciary means that judges are independent of political pressure and influence when making their decisions.

An independent judiciary is essential to respect for the rule of law. Judges should not be pressured by a political party, private interest or public opinion when asked to determine what the law requires. The independence of the judiciary from these influences ensures that everyone has a fair chance to take their case to court and that judges are impartial in their decisions. Judges must also explain their decisions in public written submissions, and their decisions can be challenged in a higher court for review. These elements of judicial decision-making ensure that judges remain accountable to the rule of law. For example, as we have already mentioned, the legal ban on untouchability in free India has not succeeded due to insufficient social support.