In Defense of Flogging (1 Viewer)

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In Defense of Flogging is set to be published in June, this article written by the books author Peter Moskos talks about the book somewhat briefly. The primary focus of the book is the broken prison system, but it also deals with flogging to some degree as well.
When I started writing In Defense of Flogging, I wasn't yet persuaded as to the book's basic premise. I, too, was opposed to flogging. It is barbaric, retrograde, and ugly. But as I researched, wrote, and thought, I convinced myself of the moral justness of my defense. Still, I dared not utter the four words in professional company until after I earned tenure. Is not publishing a provocatively titled intellectual book what academic freedom is all about?

Certainly In Defense of Flogging is more about the horrors of our prison-industrial complex than an ode to flogging. But I do defend flogging as the best way to jump-start the prison debate and reach beyond the liberal choir. Generally those who wish to lessen the suffering of prisoners get too readily dismissed as bleeding hearts or soft on criminals. All the while, the public's legitimate demand for punishment has created, because we lack alternatives, the biggest prison boom in the history of the world. Prison reformers—the same movement, it should be noted, that brought us prisons in the first place—have preached with barely controlled anger and rational passion about the horrors of incarceration. And to what end? Something needs to change.

Certainly my defense of flogging is more thought experiment than policy proposal. I do not expect to see flogging reinstated any time soon. And deep down, I wouldn't want to see it. And yet, in the course of writing what is, at its core, a quaintly retro abolish-prison book, I've come to see the benefits of wrapping a liberal argument in a conservative facade. If the notion of tying people to a rack and caning them on their behinds à la Singapore disturbs you, if it takes contemplating whipping to wake you up and to see prison for what it is, so be it! The passive moral high ground has gotten us nowhere.

The opening gambit of the book is surprisingly simple: If you were sentenced to five years in prison but had the option of receiving lashes instead, what would you choose? You would probably pick flogging. Wouldn't we all?
Author info
Peter Moskos is an assistant professor of law, police science, and criminal-justice administration at John Jay College of Criminal Justice, and teaches at the City University of New York's doctoral program in sociology and at Laguardia Community College. He is a former Baltimore City police officer and author of Cop in the Hood (Princeton University Press, 2008). His book In Defense of Flogging will be published in June by Basic Books.
Full article: http://chronicle.com/article/In-Defense-of-Flogging/127208/

So whadaya think internet?
 

Lolsmith

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Prison itself is a pretty ineffective form of punishment. What it usually does is just turn criminals into even worse people and is often a training ground for such things, especially in the case of juvenile delinquents. However, personally I think there is a more important aspect to consider before punishment, and that is what is considered criminal to begin with. Victimless crimes are not harmful to anyone except (potentially) those involved in participating in them. They shouldn't even be considered crimes let alone should they put non-violent offenders in the same vicinity and lot as those who are actually violent people and will act violently against them. A guy who was caught smoking marijuana in his own room, harming nobody else, should not be in the same place as a domestic abuser.

After that, the criminal system (including the judicial aspect) in itself is pretty broken. What can we do with people who break the law? Restrict or remove their liberty. For however long depends on the viciousness of the crime. Thereafter, what punishment fits the crime? How many arbitrary years should someone lose their liberty for committing a crime? Are those who hand down sentences aware of the physical and mental traumas faced in prison? Australia is meant to have a rehabilitative system (so I'm told), as opposed to a punitive one. What measures are taken to rehabilitate criminals to ensure they do not re-offend? Simply the horrendous extended experience of gaol or something much more practical?

Is corporal punishment so much more barbaric than locking a man in a hole for a decade?
 

Chemical Ali

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It's interesting to ask yourself whether you'd rather receive 50 lashes or 10 years prison for a given offence...
 

Rothbard

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There are some very interesting discussions to be had around this topic

You won't get them here
 

abbeyroad

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There are some very interesting discussions to be had around this topic

You won't get them here
I don't know, I think there are enough intelligent people around here for this discussion to get somewhere. But of course it is foreseeable that it would inevitably degenerate into a debate about the evil of capitalism or the legitimacy of the state and how the Jews really control the world and did 911.
 

Blastus

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I don't know, I think there are enough intelligent people around here for this discussion to get somewhere. But of course it is foreseeable that it would inevitably degenerate into a debate about the evil of capitalism or the legitimacy of the state and how the Jews really control the world and did 911.
Every fucking thread derails into the legitimacy of Israel or worshiping soldiers

every fucking thread
 

abbeyroad

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m8 what are you talking about Israel is illegitimate and soldiers are heroes who protect our liberty by robbing our money and using it to invade another country!!!!11!!
 

Big_Boy_James

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Lets man rape Omiie jay and see what that is like.

Someone shove a tandoori chicken in his tight ass plz.
 

Swong

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definitely not.
like most people said flogging would be preferred over prison. Doesn't really give the person who committed the crime time to reflect and to feel sorry for themselves. Are jails fully funded by taxpayers? if it is, i think we should be using those prisoners to generate some sort of income to feed themselves..
 

Blastus

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definitely not.
like most people said flogging would be preferred over prison. Doesn't really give the person who committed the crime time to reflect and to feel sorry for themselves. Are jails fully funded by taxpayers? if it is, i think we should be using those prisoners to generate some sort of income to feed themselves..
jesus that's how you get slave camps man
 

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