Punishment Paper

1088 Words5 Pages
Punishment Research Paper SOC 120 11/26/11 Dr. Tiffenia D. Archie Punishment Research Paper In Today’s struggling economy we are seeing more and more citizens being arrested, for a variety of reasons. The reasoning can be anything from family abuse, robbery, the selling or possession of drugs, murder, and the list goes on. Our criminal system in the United States uses four ways to justify punishment. Retribution, deterrence, rehabilitation, and societal protection, each of these ways of justifying punishment carries its own style of punishment together with the pros and cons for each citizen. By definition, retribution the oldest justification for punishment is to satisfy a society’s need for retribution, “an act of moral vengeance by which society makes the offender suffer as much as the suffering caused by the crime” (Macionis, p182, 2006). Retribution has been playing a role in society since the beginning of time, and the creation of the bible. Back in time when retribution was the way that society dealt with crime, they felt that crime was an upset to society’s original order as a whole. This is how society came up with the idea that crimes committed should carry a punishment equal to the amount of suffering created by the crime. We still use retribution to some extent in the law today. Deterrence is society’s way of preventing criminal behavior through the act of punishment. Deterrence is based on the eighteenth century thoughts that people will not commit a crime if the punishment outweighs the pleasure of the crimes. Deterrence was used to reduce the number of people facing the death penalty. The thought was that if you could scare citizens into not committing crimes, than the number of people on death row could be reduced. Rehabilitation is a program designed to reform the offender to prevent future offenses.

More about Punishment Paper

Open Document