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  #1  
Old 07-15-2013
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Default Corrupt Judicial Systems?

It has come to my attention that a thread devoted to talking about possibly flawed law cases, be it through poor defence/prosecution or influence from the media and the masses, is necessary.
Could we start a conversation about this here?
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Old 07-15-2013
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Hmm? what's that? I was too busy paying off these judges and juries.
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Old 07-15-2013
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Originally Posted by Bakura136 View Post
It has come to my attention that a thread devoted to talking about possibly flawed law cases, be it through poor defence/prosecution or influence from the media and the masses, is necessary.
Could we start a conversation about this here?
This is an incredibly broad topic that you are trying to bring up. Not really sure what specifically you want to have a conversation about.
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Old 07-15-2013
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Jumping in here, why not start with the purpose of the judicial system? I tend to agree with Fared's points in the BAR. However, I'm certain somebody has a counterargument vis a vis punishment being an important part of dealing with wrongdoers, even to the point of punishment being the means and the end. Should we, as a race, embrace punishment instead of rehabilitation as a solution to those of us who break with society's rules?

I feel the discussion will evolve from this starting point fairly well.
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Old 07-15-2013
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Well, I think its been shown that punishment is not an effective way to reduce crime, so it wouldn't make much sense to focus our efforts on punishing lawbreakers. I agree with Fared that rehabilitation should take priority over punishment. I don't think the United States makes enough of an effort to reform inmates and the fact that our prison system is controlled by corporate interests means thats unlikely to change soon.
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Old 07-16-2013
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Law is not necessarily good, and good is not necessarily something one should force upon others. The ugliness that is the desire to see wrongdoers suffer, though strange in that one must define a wrongdoer in order to punish them, with said punishment being a release of one's own inner wrongdoing as a result of other wrongdoing... anyway. That ugliness to see wrongdoers suffer is human, and not something one should force others to suppress for the sake of good or even the most efficient thing possible.

Evil and good barely have any difference when it comes to forcing your own way on others because that forceful expression is very situational and subject to one's own understanding of good.

Most people would agree that forcing others to act how you want them to is evil. Yet what if you're forcing them to do good? What I'm trying to say is that there's basically no difference whether it's good or evil, and there's no difference whether that force is good or evil.

People will do what they want to do.

Now, what does this halfhearted statement entail? Quite simply the desire to do good should be subject to scrutiny by oneself constantly so as not to make huge mistakes that harm large amounts of people. If you try to understand what your good may cause then you can properly weigh things if you feel you absolutely must do something for the sake of good.

Specifically, reform is not necessarily good or evil. Punishment can be good within evil. Reform is a form of mercy. Mercy isn't always necessary. The situation matters. But, once again, people will do what they want. There's always a downside.
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Old 07-16-2013
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This is an incredibly broad topic that you are trying to bring up. Not really sure what specifically you want to have a conversation about.
If I had to venture a guess, George Zimmerman.
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Old 07-16-2013
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In terms of punishment vs rehabilitation, I think it depends on a variety of factors. In some cases, punishment can be rehabilitation.

For small crimes, things like graffiti and smashing up bus stops when drunk, people should be given serious community hours and work. Some kind of public shaming system too, showing these people that the crimes they committed were stupid and did nothing but make everyone's lives more annoying.

For drug ownership, possession, rehabilitation is significantly more effective than prison ever would be. Drug dealing however, serious dealing that is rather than just dealing some weed to your mates at a party, should be met with severe prison time.

Under 21's who commit crimes should also be rehabilitated wherever possible, and be given real opportunities to turn their lives around. The majority of youth related crime is due to negligent parents, and that's something that needs fixing.

Moderate crimes, things like burglary and theft should suffer some moderate prison time, 3 years or less for first time offenders. After release, paying attention to why they committed the crimes in the first place, and attempting to lift them out of whatever situation made them decided to commit crimes, be it drugs, poverty ect.

Serious crimes like rape, murder ect. should be met with very large prison sentences, possible life sentences. 15-20+ years depending on the scale of the offense.

Extreme crimes, things like mass murder, terrorism and attacks so horriffic even criminal minds wouldn't talk about it, should be met with a full life sentence, with no chance of parole. People who commit those kinds of crimes have given up their humanity. Murder out of passion (i.e a cheating wife) is at some level understandable. People like Adam Lanza, if caught, cannot ever be rehabilitated or released. They have shown themselves to have no regard for human life or property, no remorse and no care. People who commit extreme crimes would be sentenced to spend the rest of their lives in a small concrete box, and given bare necessities to survive there. Nothing more, nothing less. People who are capable of committing those sorts of crimes in my opinion gave up their rights when they ignored the rights of those they killed.

In terms of prison overall, no gyms, no pool tables or TV's or anything of the like. Prisons are places of punishment, not recreation. They will be treated fairly, but not treated better than we treat our poorest or elderly outside of prison. Prison shouldnt offer living better conditions on the inside than out.

As for white collar crime, companies and people should be fined more than they actually made committing those crimes. I've seen cases where companies were fined $5 million but made $500 million from committing the crime. Charge them what they illegally made, and more. That should stop them taking advantage of us, and the country as a whole.
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Old 07-16-2013
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Originally Posted by HolyShadow View Post
Law is not necessarily good, and good is not necessarily something one should force upon others. The ugliness that is the desire to see wrongdoers suffer, though strange in that one must define a wrongdoer in order to punish them, with said punishment being a release of one's own inner wrongdoing as a result of other wrongdoing... anyway. That ugliness to see wrongdoers suffer is human, and not something one should force others to suppress for the sake of good or even the most efficient thing possible.

Evil and good barely have any difference when it comes to forcing your own way on others because that forceful expression is very situational and subject to one's own understanding of good.

Most people would agree that forcing others to act how you want them to is evil. Yet what if you're forcing them to do good? What I'm trying to say is that there's basically no difference whether it's good or evil, and there's no difference whether that force is good or evil.

People will do what they want to do.

Now, what does this halfhearted statement entail? Quite simply the desire to do good should be subject to scrutiny by oneself constantly so as not to make huge mistakes that harm large amounts of people. If you try to understand what your good may cause then you can properly weigh things if you feel you absolutely must do something for the sake of good.

Specifically, reform is not necessarily good or evil. Punishment can be good within evil. Reform is a form of mercy. Mercy isn't always necessary. The situation matters. But, once again, people will do what they want. There's always a downside.
You seem have made three erroneous assumptions:

1=Rehabilitation is a form of mercy, not a practicality.

2=Rehabilitation is forcing people to reform to become 'right-minded'; it is not - it is about allowing people to see why society may reject their previous actions and thereby willing reflect on where they wish to take their future. (What happened to Alex in Clockwork Orange is not rehabilitation because they did not make him understand why they rejected his actions as wrong.

3=The Law has anything to do with good and evil - and that any form of force is evil.

The erroneous nature of each of these assumptions greatly undermines your premise.
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  #10  
Old 07-16-2013
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Originally Posted by Fat1Fared View Post
You seem have made three erroneous assumptions:

1=Rehabilitation is a form of mercy, not a practicality.

2=Rehabilitation is forcing people to reform to become 'right-minded'; it is not - it is about allowing people to see why society may reject their previous actions and thereby willing reflect on where they wish to take their future. (What happened to Alex in Clockwork Orange is not rehabilitation because they did not make him understand why they rejected his actions as wrong.

3=The Law has anything to do with good and evil - and that any form of force is evil.

The erroneous nature of each of these assumptions greatly undermines your premise.
Wrong, wrong, and wrong. You read everything I said wrong.

1: Rehabilitation is the antithesis to the death penalty. If the total focus is on rehabilitation then there can be no death penalty because there is no possibility of rehabilitation if you're dead except being the same as every other corpse. In that case, then what is a popular counterargument to there being no death penalty? "Justice for the family of those slain!" Something like that? Then what is the opposite of justice in this situation? Mercy. Rehabilitation is a form of mercy shown to criminals rather than punishing them for the sake of harming them for the sake of justice.

2: Following this line of logic, I was going on about forcing those whose families were harmed to simply accept that these criminals who did these atrocious things are getting off easy and being rehabilitated instead of suffering despite what they did. That can be considered unethical depending on the situation.

3: Some may consider force to be evil, but this line of thinking has flaws. I don't think I said it necessarily was, just that it can be easy to prescribe to that notion. The idea that you should force your way is a very human one but it extremely easily risks the possibility of unintended consequences, and it impedes another's will which also has the very human tendency of wanting to force one's way. Like swallowing up another's will with your own for ways of thinking that ultimately result in really bad things happening to others which you then ignore to protect what you did and your ego therein.
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  #11  
Old 07-16-2013
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In terms of punishment vs rehabilitation, I think it depends on a variety of factors. In some cases, punishment can be rehabilitation.

For small crimes, things like graffiti and smashing up bus stops when drunk, people should be given serious community hours and work. Some kind of public shaming system too, showing these people that the crimes they committed were stupid and did nothing but make everyone's lives more annoying.

For drug ownership, possession, rehabilitation is significantly more effective than prison ever would be. Drug dealing however, serious dealing that is rather than just dealing some weed to your mates at a party, should be met with severe prison time.

Under 21's who commit crimes should also be rehabilitated wherever possible, and be given real opportunities to turn their lives around. The majority of youth related crime is due to negligent parents, and that's something that needs fixing.

Moderate crimes, things like burglary and theft should suffer some moderate prison time, 3 years or less for first time offenders. After release, paying attention to why they committed the crimes in the first place, and attempting to lift them out of whatever situation made them decided to commit crimes, be it drugs, poverty ect.

Serious crimes like rape, murder ect. should be met with very large prison sentences, possible life sentences. 15-20+ years depending on the scale of the offense.

Extreme crimes, things like mass murder, terrorism and attacks so horriffic even criminal minds wouldn't talk about it, should be met with a full life sentence, with no chance of parole. People who commit those kinds of crimes have given up their humanity. Murder out of passion (i.e a cheating wife) is at some level understandable. People like Adam Lanza, if caught, cannot ever be rehabilitated or released. They have shown themselves to have no regard for human life or property, no remorse and no care. People who commit extreme crimes would be sentenced to spend the rest of their lives in a small concrete box, and given bare necessities to survive there. Nothing more, nothing less. People who are capable of committing those sorts of crimes in my opinion gave up their rights when they ignored the rights of those they killed.

In terms of prison overall, no gyms, no pool tables or TV's or anything of the like. Prisons are places of punishment, not recreation. They will be treated fairly, but not treated better than we treat our poorest or elderly outside of prison. Prison shouldnt offer living better conditions on the inside than out.

As for white collar crime, companies and people should be fined more than they actually made committing those crimes. I've seen cases where companies were fined $5 million but made $500 million from committing the crime. Charge them what they illegally made, and more. That should stop them taking advantage of us, and the country as a whole.
I agree with the concept that the situation changes what is deemed acceptable.
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Old 07-16-2013
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I agree with the concept that the situation changes what is deemed acceptable.
No fair legal system will be able to account for every possible case. It comes down to specific interpretations of the law for individual cases. Legal systems need to be flexible in how they work, otherwise getting fair punishment is made more difficult.
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Old 07-20-2013
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There's no such thing as rehabilitating a sociopath. People forget that. And they make up half the people in prison. Some people can't be saved. That's life.
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Old 07-20-2013
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There's no such thing as rehabilitating a sociopath. People forget that. And they make up half the people in prison. Some people can't be saved. That's life.
Some real science facts up in here, yo.
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Old 07-20-2013
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There's no such thing as rehabilitating a sociopath. People forget that. And they make up half the people in prison. Some people can't be saved. That's life.
Hence my solution for mass-murderers. Lifetime sentence in a concrete box. Minimal cost to us, maximum punishment for them.
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Old 07-20-2013
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No fair legal system will be able to account for every possible case. It comes down to specific interpretations of the law for individual cases. Legal systems need to be flexible in how they work, otherwise getting fair punishment is made more difficult.
I agree with this, but then again, I am an adjudicator for an Ombudsman, so I am trained to agree with this.

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Wrong, wrong, and wrong. You read everything I said wrong.

1: Rehabilitation is the antithesis to the death penalty. If the total focus is on rehabilitation then there can be no death penalty because there is no possibility of rehabilitation if you're dead except being the same as every other corpse. In that case, then what is a popular counterargument to there being no death penalty? "Justice for the family of those slain!" Something like that? Then what is the opposite of justice in this situation? Mercy. Rehabilitation is a form of mercy shown to criminals rather than punishing them for the sake of harming them for the sake of justice.
Half of this does not even engage with my point, so I will just move on from that; as for the parts which did, just saying rehabilitation is merciful does not make it so. There are not many politicians or law-enforcement officials who openly support mercy for criminals, yet more and more support rehabilitation - why? The answer is simple; it is because rehabilitation is a practical way to deal with most criminals.

You send a thief to jail for three months to 'punish' him, he is statistically more likely to became drug-addict than 'learn' his lesson; however, make him actually learn why stealing is considered wrong and 'atone' for his actions, then may be you can prevent him re-offending.

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2: Following this line of logic, I was going on about forcing those whose families were harmed to simply accept that these criminals who did these atrocious things are getting off easy and being rehabilitated instead of suffering despite what they did. That can be considered unethical depending on the situation.
This assumes rehabilitation orders are the 'easy' option; actually, I think spending 7 hours a day painting fences and cleaning parks is a lot harder work than rotting away in a prison cell or coffin box.

Quote:
3: Some may consider force to be evil, but this line of thinking has flaws. I don't think I said it necessarily was, just that it can be easy to prescribe to that notion. The idea that you should force your way is a very human one but it extremely easily risks the possibility of unintended consequences, and it impedes another's will which also has the very human tendency of wanting to force one's way. Like swallowing up another's will with your own for ways of thinking that ultimately result in really bad things happening to others which you then ignore to protect what you did and your ego therein.
As I said, that is not rehabilitation.
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Old 07-20-2013
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There's no such thing as rehabilitating a sociopath. People forget that. And they make up half the people in prison. Some people can't be saved. That's life.
Do you even know what the word sociopath means?

Still, at least we can always count on you to put forward the shoot them all and let god deal with them approach! It was feeling far too unified without you.

Last edited by Fat1Fared; 07-20-2013 at 12:59 PM.
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Old 07-20-2013
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Do you even know what the word sociopath means?

Still, at least we can always count on you to put forward the shoot them all and let god deal with them approach! It was feeling far too unified without you.
I think they use the terms Sociopath and Psychopath interchangeably, or at least much more loosely.
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Old 07-20-2013
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I think they use the terms Sociopath and Psychopath interchangeably, or at least much more loosely.
Sociopaths lack a conscious. They don't feel anything for others and are basically out for themselves. Wolves in sheep's clothing, they will pretend to care and feel about others to pass off like the rest of us, but they lack a heart, essentially. You can't fix someone to to feel if they are bent on doing whatever they want. Although in psychology they don't actually use the term "sociopath" as a disorder, they do diagnosis people as having "anti-social personality disorder" and there isn't much you can do for a person like that.

Psychopaths don't so much lack a conscious as they live in their own world and don't believe they have to follow the rules that society creates. They are a huge problem as well (can't really be fixed), but they aren't sociopaths.

ex: Joker would be a psychopath. Hannibal Lecter would be a sociopath. You can't fix either of these kinds of people because if they go violent, it's not because of situation or not knowing better but because they don't care.
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Old 07-20-2013
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Unfortunately you can't just label someone a sociopath and call it a day. Like most things, there's far too many variables for simple labels. There are many people who would be deemed sociopaths or psychopaths by an expert who live normally in society.

The ones who commit horrible crimes is a different story, but it's still not useful using those terms on people.
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Old 07-20-2013
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Why? Because it's gonna hurt someone's feelings? There are plenty of mental health providers who use it, so I see no reason why not to. Sure, like I said before, you can't diagnosis someone as being a psychopath or sociopath, but psychopathy is a real thing just like having an anti personality disorder is. Most people who are sociopaths are diagnosed as such, and it's not the being a sociopath that's a big issue so much as having a sociopath who decides to be above the law and act out because they don't care.

Like I said before, these people can't be fixed because you can't give someone a conscious. Either they care or they don't. People like that shouldn't be reintroduced into society just to make the soft at heart among us feel better about themselves.
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Old 07-20-2013
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Why? Because it's gonna hurt someone's feelings? There are plenty of mental health providers who use it, so I see no reason why not to. Sure, like I said before, you can't diagnosis someone as being a psychopath or sociopath, but psychopathy is a real thing just like having an anti personality disorder is. Most people who are sociopaths are diagnosed as such, and it's not the being a sociopath that's a big issue so much as having a sociopath who decides to be above the law and act out because they don't care.

Like I said before, these people can't be fixed because you can't give someone a conscious. Either they care or they don't. People like that shouldn't be reintroduced into society just to make the soft at heart among us feel better about themselves.
Wow, spoken like a true Christian and militaristic defender of the 'Free World'. :P

No one is diagnosed as a 'sociopath' and any quack using that term has no idea what he/she is on about.

Also, having an anti-social personality disorder is completely different to just 'not having a conscious'. (Also, note, that crude term is only used in the USA - go figure.)

Now, even if we go along with your delusion that these two concepts are the same and having an anti-social personality disorder is justifiable cause to have you locked away for the rest of your life, then it still does not overcome the fact that only a tiny minority of those with criminal records would ever be defined as having an 'anti-social personality disorder', so your argument that this group somehow undermines the concept of rehabilitation is completely flawed because it only relates to tiny group. If this tiny group, as you put it, 'cannot be saved', then they can dealt with independently.

To say that because an idea 'may' not work for everyone means it should not be used for anyone is the most idiotic thing I have ever heard.

Last edited by Fat1Fared; 07-20-2013 at 06:37 PM.
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Old 07-21-2013
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Why? Because it's gonna hurt someone's feelings? There are plenty of mental health providers who use it, so I see no reason why not to. Sure, like I said before, you can't diagnosis someone as being a psychopath or sociopath, but psychopathy is a real thing just like having an anti personality disorder is. Most people who are sociopaths are diagnosed as such, and it's not the being a sociopath that's a big issue so much as having a sociopath who decides to be above the law and act out because they don't care.

Like I said before, these people can't be fixed because you can't give someone a conscious. Either they care or they don't. People like that shouldn't be reintroduced into society just to make the soft at heart among us feel better about themselves.
It's got nothing to do with hurting peoples feelings. It's because it isn't an accurate description. It'd be like your doctor turning round and just saying 'you have a viral infection'. it's a pointless term to throw around froma legal perspective, because it very quickly biases the jury and doesn't actually contribute to any proper psychological diagnosis.
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Old 07-21-2013
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It's got nothing to do with hurting peoples feelings. It's because it isn't an accurate description. It'd be like your doctor turning round and just saying 'you have a viral infection'. it's a pointless term to throw around froma legal perspective, because it very quickly biases the jury and doesn't actually contribute to any proper psychological diagnosis.
This, so much this.
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Old 07-21-2013
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There's no such thing as rehabilitating a sociopath. People forget that. And they make up half the people in prison. Some people can't be saved. That's life.
I agree that some people can't be saved. I don't agree that they make up half the people in prison.

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Hence my solution for mass-murderers. Lifetime sentence in a concrete box. Minimal cost to us, maximum punishment for them.
If there is an extraordinarily negligible chance of their rehabilitation and the crime they committed is heinous, then the death penalty is better than a lifetime sentence, both for the families who suffered and for the state.

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Originally Posted by Fat1Fared View Post
You send a thief to jail for three months to 'punish' him, he is statistically more likely to became drug-addict than 'learn' his lesson; however, make him actually learn why stealing is considered wrong and 'atone' for his actions, then may be you can prevent him re-offending.
A thief, perhaps, but aren't you also dehumanizing the thief you seek to rehabilitate? In america most people in prison are blacks. This thief is, statistically speaking, most likely black. Their kind of background is likely lower-class with all the cultural problems that modern lower-class african-american communities have, or he most likely wouldn't have ended up in prison in the first place. He has friends, a family, and a poorly-thought-out reason for having stolen what he did. Most likely he's just a punk that doesn't pose much danger if you teach him what the right thing to do is and give him the tools to deal with that. The victims most likely only suffered a loss of a few thousand dollars, so punishment in itself doesn't fit the crime.

In this situation, obviously, rehabilitation is a better choice. But what would you do for a murderer, or as biggles said, a mass-murderer? Teach them the folly of their ways by making them dig ditches and paint fences? I'm sorry, but that's going easy on them. They deserve to suffer for their crimes. They deserve to die if they cannot be rehabilitated.

The point of rehabilitation is ultimately to help them fit in with society as a whole. Practically, that means helping them get a job, since having a job is likely going to integrate them back into society in the fastest manner. It'll also raise their income level to lower the chance they'll commit any crime involving money at all. Some people deserve this help. Other people clearly don't, and not offering the death sentence for those most heinous of criminals is a simple act of mercy.

Either way, my point here was to attempt to dispel the absolutist theocracy that punishing criminals is somehow bad in every way. There is a group that benefits from it, albeit in an intangible way, so it is not inherently bad in every way.
___

AllisonWalker, quit talking out your ass. I read what you said about social disorders and it sounds almost completely like bullshit. I'm not even going to dignify it with a specific response. Don't play with the big boys if you can't hit the ball.

Last edited by HolyShadow; 07-21-2013 at 10:19 AM.
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Old 07-21-2013
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If there is an extraordinarily negligible chance of their rehabilitation and the crime they committed is heinous, then the death penalty is better than a lifetime sentence, both for the families who suffered and for the state.
You can't keep chasing after extremely negligible chances. Not in a realisitic world.
Plus, who would hire or want to work with someone who killed multiple people? Even if they've been 'rehabilitated'

And Full-life sentences are almost always cheaper than the death penalty is, believe it or not, because of the extremely complex and in-depth legal process attributed to it. With my 'alternative punishment', that gap would be increased further.
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It's got nothing to do with hurting peoples feelings. It's because it isn't an accurate description. It'd be like your doctor turning round and just saying 'you have a viral infection'. it's a pointless term to throw around froma legal perspective, because it very quickly biases the jury and doesn't actually contribute to any proper psychological diagnosis.
I already said "anti-personality disorder". A lot of those people cannot be fixed, they don't care about following laws or if they hurt people, and it is an accurate description for analyzing people. The pysch nurse I used to work with did this all the time when she worked for the police, and it is a known statistic that half of all people in prison fit the profile for being sociopathic. There's really nothing you can do for people who don't have a conscious and don't care about following the rules.

Everything I'm saying is what I Know from actually working in psychology, so you can kindly shove it, Holy.
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You can't keep chasing after extremely negligible chances. Not in a realisitic world.
Plus, who would hire or want to work with someone who killed multiple people? Even if they've been 'rehabilitated'

And Full-life sentences are almost always cheaper than the death penalty is, believe it or not, because of the extremely complex and in-depth legal process attributed to it. With my 'alternative punishment', that gap would be increased further.
So because it's inconvenient you wouldn't do what's right?
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I assume when you say 'conscious' you mean 'conscience'? As Conscious is being awake and aware.
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I already said "anti-personality disorder". A lot of those people cannot be fixed, they don't care about following laws or if they hurt people, and it is an accurate description for analyzing people. The pysch nurse I used to work with did this all the time when she worked for the police, and it is a known statistic that half of all people in prison fit the profile for being sociopathic. There's really nothing you can do for people who don't have a conscious and don't care about following the rules.

Everything I'm saying is what I Know from actually working in psychology, so you can kindly shove it, Holy.
It's "conscience", Allison.

Quote:
so·ci·o·path
Noun
A person with a personality disorder manifesting itself in extreme antisocial attitudes and behavior and a lack of conscience.
You're focusing mostly on the lack of conscience and directly linking the antisocial behaviour with the lack of conscience when these don't necessarily need to be linked and in fact one can exist regardless of the other. Social activity doesn't necessarily need to follow the norms of the society as a whole. The fact that they create a prison subculture shows that many do engage in social activity that you consider twisted and conscienceless; however, that is social activity whether you like it or not. Likewise, some people are very good at manipulating people and appearing as if to follow social norms when in reality they're just screwing everyone else over for their own benefit.

If you link these two things together when they ought not to be then you yourself run the risk of calling yourself a sociopath. Think about it. Nobody here seems to like you at all. You're rejected by our societal subculture and you think you're right. You don't want to change. Therefore, by your own twisted worldview, you have no conscience. And I'll be damned before I'm lectured by someone with no conscience.
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