2/27/2009

Weird Canadian Criminologists think that punishing criminals doesn't deter crime

This response from Canadian Criminologists is just too funny.

Great politics, lousy policy.

That's how criminologists and critics are summing up the Conservative push for more penalties after a spate of 18 shootings in British Columbia blamed on gang warfare.

Prime Minister Stephen Harper heads to Vancouver on Thursday to talk up a new bill that, if passed, is expected to deem any gang-related killing a case of first-degree murder.

The Conservatives also promised in the last election to create a new criminal offence, with a mandatory prison term, for drive-by shootings.

It's the government's latest flex of legislative muscle as it renews a crime-fighting agenda that partly died when Harper forced an early election last fall. . . . .

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4 Comments:

Blogger 1 said...

Well Professor John maybe Irvin Waller has a point considering the recidivism rate...

The only real problem with Waller's viewpoint is that he misses that minor detail, 'criminals in prison aren't hurting or killing citizens while they are imprisoned'...

2/27/2009 3:30 AM  
Blogger The Right Guy said...

Haven't some places tried this before? (To poor results...)

2/27/2009 8:06 AM  
Blogger Matthew said...

Actually the liberal view is probably correct in this case. I think there was an article on drunk driving. One country imposed draconian punishments and had little effect. A city made sure people could not get in or out of it's borders after a certain hour with running into a checkpoint where they were tested for booze, and the rate dropped like a stone.

The thinking is people who take risks do it on the basis that they won't get caught, not on the basis they can deal with the punishment. So you could make the punishment for murder being drawn and quartered and coyotes eat your intestines while you are still alive and it would have little effect on the murder rate, but if the police magically appeared like I dream of a genie every time a murder happened the rate would drop.

The problem is the genie technology.

2/27/2009 10:57 AM  
Blogger John A said...

Buried in there, both sides have a point. One I was amazed to hear from Ms. Pelosi the other day.

Existing laws are not being used the way we the people expect/want.

Politicians' answer - pass new laws instead of asking why this typr of crime is not being prosecuted as pre-meditated" or whatever the formula is for first-degree murder rather than lesser charges.

Bah.

The quoted critics" intervention before-hand to [try to] prevent the crime.

OK, but only barely. Yes, prevention would be a good thing. But not all that effective on its own, at least as far as I've seen implemented. Offer basketball and conversation, sure, but mostly the ones who will be swayed from joining their peers in gangs or otherwise tilting toward crime already want to go that way. The ones who do not consider it, or are living in fear and think being in a gang at least offers some protection (if only from fellow members), or see the law-abiding getting nowhere - they need more. Enforce [existing] law, show that criminal activity has more bad points tha not...

Sheesh.

2/27/2009 3:37 PM  

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