This article examines the relationship between concepts of social justice as consisting in equal shares and the government’s corresponding responsibility to redistribute wealth. As the gains made from capitalism have become clearer, critics of capitalism have shifted emphasis toward problems of inequality, consumption, and stratification. A clear demarcation of the proper responsibilities of government, primarily related to equality before the law, freedom, and protection from those who would do evil, and the broader reality of society and social institutions is necessary for an adequate understanding of social justice. If one does justice to others by not harming them through force or fraud, then one should be able to live free of government coercion and expect protection from wrongful coercion by others.
Hunter Baker, "Reflections on Social Justice, Government, and Society," Journal of Markets & Morality 15, no. 1 (Spring 2012): 143-159