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Old 08-08-2011, 12:30 AM
645 posts, read 1,105,218 times
Reputation: 1771


Originally Posted by pamelaBeurman View Post
I'm well aware that our laws are in dire need of revision when it comes to how a sex offender is classified. At best, our current laws are archaic.

My little rant here is about serial predators. It's a common practice here to release them and just let them live on the streets. This being a small town makes it worse.

I took my daughter shopping recently at a store downtown. We get out of the truck and there, a few feet away, was one of the guys they had just shown on TV the week before, just sitting on a little retaining wall.

Sure, i'm being over protective but at least my daughter is safe. What about the others?

This is a byproduct of the war on drugs. With all the mandatory minimum punishments, as well as drugs being the most obvious target visible to the public and civil authorities, and it’s also the most important source of revenue for many local law enforcement agencies, is it any wonder why more serious crimes go unnoticed? Moreover, with jails filling up with those sentenced to lengthy drug related jail/prison terms, we just don’t have room in jails for people that are committing “true crimes.”
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Old 08-08-2011, 10:48 AM
7,112 posts, read 9,369,801 times
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Another problem is that we really don't have resources set aside to make sure people getting out of prison have some sort of shot at a decent life. But that applies more to property crimes. A 3/4 house for addicts in the town where I work recently got changed over to a halfway house for sex offenders only, and the good townspeople are already getting out their torches and pitchforks to close the place down. But you have to put people SOMEWHERE.
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Old 08-08-2011, 01:38 PM
Location: Nassau, Long Island, NY
16,408 posts, read 28,943,038 times
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Originally Posted by annerk View Post
I think probation definitely has it's place--there are certainly people who commit petty crimes (shoplifting a fairly inexpensive item comes to mind) where putting them in jail serves no purpose, but just making thier life miserable with probation makes them never want to commit a crime again.

It's particularly effective with teens, because the terms of probation can include staying in school, not cutting class, getting passing grades, a curfew, etc.
A probation officer once told me that the reason the system works is because roughly 90% of the people aren't hardcore criminals and don't absolutely need it.

Originally Posted by annerk View Post
By the way, just to address a technicality...

Probation is served in lieu of jail or prison. Parole is what happens after someone is released from jail or prison but the DOC or courts require ongoing supervision.
So when the people out there scream, "Abolish parole!" they don't know what they are talking about because "parole" does not mean release from jail, it means supervision after release from jail or prison. The people screaming, "Abolish parole!" are unknowingly advocating for release from jail or prison WITHOUT supervision.
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Old 08-09-2011, 01:38 AM
645 posts, read 1,105,218 times
Reputation: 1771
Both probation and parole generally do very little. Without parole, jails would just fill to capacity. We’re already a jailor nation. 1 out of every 4 people in the world that are in jail/prison are Americans, yet we only represent 1 our of every 20 people in the world… The best thing that probation and parole do is to take regular non-violent people and turn them into anti social creatures that hate cops, courts, and most of society. How would you like to be on probation or parole for some petty little infraction of a law that shouldn’t even be a law? Then you’re challenged for the rest of your life stuck in low paying jobs due to a petty record. Moreover, how’d you like to be told where you can go, when you can go, and with whom you can hang out with. In addition to this, you have a curfew and all sorts of other restrictive rules that violate your civil rights and have nothing to do with committing a crime no matter how ridiculous the laws are. It naturally breeds anger, resentment, and bitter reprisals.

Most probation and parole officers are naÔve. They’re also another example of useless government.

It generally costs 3,500 dollars per person on parole or probation. When you consider the cost of having cops find them, DA office to prosecute, public defenders judges, court staffing down to the lowliest sanitation workers there, as well as our world record number of jails per capita full of prison guards to the parole and probation officers that oversee them in the end, that 3,500 dollars is not covered by fines and costs.

Our country is about cash register justice. As a result, we’ve criminalized a lot of non-crimes, and we have a vast and all encompassing criminal justice system that’s oppressively expensive operate, and as a result, real criminals get set free so we can make room for all the non-criminals.

Have any of you stopped to think about how many non-criminals that get locked up turn bitter because they were locked up with real criminals? Further, how many of those non-criminals go on to commit real crime? Any society that champions prudish over zealous Draconian laws should be aware of the negative backlash it creates. Sadly, most people seem to be unable to see the obvious. This is akin to smoking a cigarette on the forward deck of the Titanic and witnessing the crash into the iceberg. Then five minutes later, you hear the rush of water entering the forward cargo hold, and overhear the ship’s engineer saying the boat will sink in 2 Ĺ hours. The average person ignores all these signs and goes about smoking cigarettes on the deck until the water’s lapping at their feet, and then they wonder, “What’s this? Why is the ship listing to starbord and sinking at the head? Jesus! they really need to make stricter laws so we can get this water under arrest!” There’s a cause and effect, but sadly most people seem to be incapable of seeing the evidence right in front of them. Quite often, their own myopic belief system clouds their judgment as well.
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