Harsher Punishments may lead to Fewer Convictions

Discussion in 'Pandora's Box' started by LostBegonia, Mar 11, 2023.

  1. I have always feared harsh punishments. There are some countries that execute people for minor crimes and that terrifies me. But a new thought just occurred to me:

    maybe in systems where the potential punishment for a crime is harsher (like death) judges are less likely to take the punishment lightly and more thorough about looking at the evidence lest they wrongly convict someone. maybe in systems where the punishment is lighter (two days in jail, $500 fine) judges think it less of a big deal and more likely to convict people with less evidence. The higher the stakes, the more careful people are. Maybe you're actually more likely to be punished unfairly for a small crime or false accusation if the punishment is light and the people in charge think it less of a big deal. On the other hand, harsher punishments, by this logic, also lead to the guilty going free more often. Judges less likely to convict someone for a smaller crime when the punishment is overly harsh. So harsh punishments lead to lack of enforcement due to people not wanting to overly punish people. This is why, when I lived in college dorms, RAs tended not to report people breaking the rules because the higher ups punished people too harshly. Lighter punishments would have led to them being reported more often and potentially punished more often.

    So this point is simultaneously an argument equally for or against harsh punishment, depending on if you want people punished for small crimes more often or not. Is it better to punish more infractions lightly or only severe infractions severely?
  2. Weird how that hasn't worked out in the US at all over the last 3 decades or so.... Most people rely on stereotype and a judge that sees hundreds of people doesn't "feel' a lot for anyone individually at that point.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  3. "The higher the stakes, the more careful people are."

    I don't think this is true. Too many innocent people on death row as it is.
  4. as a kid our neighbor was a judge he would come over for a talk to my dad,
    at the bottom-line he says if they are in front of me, then they are guilty of some thing of some one, it costs a lot to on both sides, so I book 'em hard, I never see them again if I do, its rare.
    then I book them even harder, with the death sentence, often he would say if I could execute him twice I wish I could
    'if you can't do the time then don't do the crime' why do 'mericans have issues with that?
  5. I guess I was thinking of judges who are decent and caring people. in reality a lot aren't. I didn't fully think things through, it was just a new idea I had while high and felt like sharing
  6. I had a cousin who was a judge. I talked to her about this and her point of view was that, for a relatively minor crime, she went pretty easy on you the first time. Get in her court a second time though and your in some serious crap. Her beliefs were for really serious crimes, rape, murder, crimes against children, you were going away for quite a while. Even an attitude has consequences.

    My favorite story about her was she asked the convicted felon if he had anything to say before sentencing. Her turned toward the lawyers, the people watching, the jury, and then my cousin and told each of them, 'Fuck you' flipping each of them off. My cousin asked him, 'you realize I haven't sentenced you yet?'. He told her 'fuck you' again. She said she was going to sentence him to about 7 years, instead, his attitude cost him, she sentenced him to 20 years. I think most judges TRY to do whats right, but often a lot of things influence what they do in court. Black judges sentencing whites to longer sentences, white judges to black criminals. Woke releasing felons for crimes against police and my absolute favorite, female teachers sleeping with students who get a stern talking to and a few years probation while male teachers doing the same, get 20 years hard time...
    • Like Like x 1
  7. guess it was woke to give Brock Turner 6 months then?
  8. 20 years is a really extreme consequence but I can respect the idea that there should be harsher consequences to those who show lack of remorse
  9. No clue who that is... so I don't have an opinion.
  10. Brock Turner is a famous white male rapist who the media downplayed the rapist part and up-played that he was a college athlete
  11. "potential" consequences are not a big deterrent to crime. Consequences happen after the crime has taken place. Why is the crime happening? & try a more preventative approach, or move the electric chair to the backseat of the patrol car. :cop:
  12. I was talking about whether potential consequences influence those deciding whether the defendant is guilty or not. whether the potential consequences influence the person deciding whether to commit the crime is a separate issue
    • Informative Informative x 1
  13. Oh, the Stanford swimmer? Yeah he was a sleezebag....

Share This Page