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NCJ Number: 69396 Find in a Library
Title: FUTURE OF SENTENCING - BACK TO SQUARE ONE (FROM NEW DIRECTIONS IN SENTENCING, P 13-18, 1980, BY BRIAN A GROSMAN - SEE NCJ-71049)
Author(s): G O W MUELLER
Date Published: 1980
Page Count: 6
Sponsoring Agency: Butterworth
Scarborough, Ontario M1P 451, Canada
Sale Source: Butterworth
2265 Midland Avenue
Scarborough, Ontario M1P 451,
Canada
Language: English
Country: Canada
Annotation: THE HARMFUL EFFECTS OF A RECENT REVERSION TO FIXED AND SEVERE SENTENCING AS CRIMINAL PUNISHMENT ARE DESCRIBED, AND COUNTERARGUMENTS ARE MADE AGAINST THE CRITICS OF AN UTILITARIAN-HUMANITARIAN SENTENCING SYSTEM.
Abstract: IN THE LAST GENERATION, SENTENCING AND CORRECTIONS HAVE GONE THROUGH FOUR DISTINCT ERAS: (1) THE ERA OF RETRIBUTION, MARKED BY RELATIVELY FIXED AND SEVERE SENTENCING; (2) THE ERA OF UTILITARIANISM, CHARACTERIZED BY THE BELIEF THAT THE BEHAVIOR OF OFFENDERS COULD BE MANIPULATED THROUGH SENTENCING AND CORRECTIONAL SCHEMES; (3) AN ERA OF HUMANISM AIMED AT GREATER RECOGNITION OF THE CRIMINAL'S HUMAN RIGHTS; AND (4) THE ERA OF NIHILISM, OR REVERSION TO FIXED SENTENCING SCHEMES IN OPERATION AROUND THE TURN OF THE CENTURY. THE DEMORALIZING IMPACT OF THE RESTORATION OF FIXED SENTENCES ON JUDICIAL AND CORRECTIONAL PERSONNEL IS DESCRIBED. IN ADDITION, THREE ARGUMENTS AGAINST THE UTILITARIAN-HUMANITARIAN SENTENCING SYSTEM ARE IDENTIFIED. THOSE OPPOSED TO THIS TYPE OF SENTENCING ARGUE THAT MANY OFFENDERS DO NOT NEED REHABILITATION BECAUSE THEY ARE WELL-ADJUSTED COMMUNITY MEMBERS, AND THE JUDGMENT OF CONVICTION DOES NOT MAKE IT OTHERWISE. ALSO, REHABILITATION REQUIRES MANIPULATIONS OF THE HUMAN PERSONALITY, WHICH CONSTITUTES AN INVASION OF THE MOST INTIMATE LAST RESERVE OF THE PERSONALITY. FURTHER, REHABILITATION EFFORTS REQUIRE VARIATIONS IN TREATMENT, THUS MAKING INEQUALITY IN SENTENCES INCONSISTENT WITH THE PRINCIPLE OF JUSTICE THAT MANDATES EQUAL TREATMENT FOR THE SAME OFFENSE. PROPONENTS OF REHABILITATION CLAIM THAT THE COURTS SHOULD BE ABLE TO PROTECT INDIVIDUALS AGAINST UNWARRANTED INVASIONS OF PRIVACY IN THE REHABILITATIVE PROCESS; THE IDEA OF ESTABLISHING GUIDELINES FOR REHABILITATION BASED ON JUDICIAL SENTENCING PATTERNS DESERVES FURTHER STUDY; AND NATIONAL CRIME RATES ARE MORE DEPENDENT ON NATIONAL, SOCIAL, EDUCATIONAL, AND ECONOMIC POLICIES THAN ON THE SENTENCING ZEAL OF JUDGES OR THE ZEAL OF POLICE DEPARTMENTS. MOREOVER, REHABILITATION NOT ONLY REINTEGRATES OFFENDERS BACK INTO SOCIETY BUT ALSO ENABLES THEM TO FUNCTION SOCIALLY AND ECONOMICALLY. THE UNITED NATIONS INTERNATIONAL PLAN OF ACTION FOR CRIME PREVENTION IS DISCUSSED, AND THE PREVIOUS HISTORY OF UNITED NATIONS CONCERN FOR THE ADMINISTRATION OF JUSTICE IS TRACED. NINE NOTES ARE PROVIDED.
Index Term(s): Canada; Custody vs treatment conflict; Punishment; Rehabilitation; Sentencing reform; Sentencing/Sanctions; Social reintegration
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