Justice Through Alternative Methods of Punishment

Throughout the years and around the globe there have been several types of punishment enforced upon criminals. Punishments ranging from crucification, flogging, whipping, caning, and of course imprisonment have been used. Imprisonment, the punishment of choice in the United States, does not serve the purpose Americans expect it to. Punishment should invoke remorse on the part of the criminal. Americans expect criminals to be punished in such a manner that it would present a criminal from committing the crime again. If these two things do not occur, what good comes from the punishment of these criminals through the American justice system? If imprisonment is not serving its purpose, an alternative form of punishment should be adopted. Criminals who are placed in cages do not feel remorse for the crimes they have committed. Sadly, most criminals leave prison more dangerous to society than when they entered. Many criminals even leave prison earlier than they are supposed to because of “good behavior”. When they leave that prison cell, they become an even greater threat to society. Jeff Jacoby writes in his essay, “Bring Back Flogging”: For tens of thousands of convicts, prison is a graduate school of criminal studies: They emerge more ruthless and savvy than when they entered. And for many offenders, there is even a certain cachet to doing time – a stint in prison becomes a sign of manhood, a status symbol (120) An alternative method of punishment such as public canings would eliminate this cachet. This indeed would bring remorse upon criminals. If young juvenile criminals were publicly caned for committing theft, many of them would actually learn their lesson and steer away from a life of crime. Imprisonment, as I stated before, is not serving its expected purpose. There is no remorse on the part of an imprisoned criminal who considers it a sign of manhood to be in his position and anticipates the day he can get out …

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