Criminals are getting off all the time. Sentences are not tough enough.
Let us go back a bit, in fact, back to the start …
By definition, crime is offensive. It is conduct carried out against rules that we have made for our own wellbeing. Some crime is more offensive than other crime. A speeding driver commits a criminal offence, is fined and loses points from his or her licence, but is not otherwise usually made the subject of public condemnation. But if while speeding the driver runs down and kills a child on a pedestrian crossing, there are some who are so offended that they would say that anything short of death—an eye for an eye—or at least an extremely lengthy gaol term, is too lenient a penalty.
Crime offends against our sense of social order and is personally offensive especially to those who become its victims. It can also be personally offensive to those who subsequently have to deal with its consequences, the ‘undertakers’ to whom I refer elsewhere.
Those consequences cannot be undone. It is never possible to restore all those affected by crime to the position that existed before. In the words of Omar Khayyam; ‘The moving
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Publication information: Book title: Getting Justice Wrong:Myths, Media and Crime. Contributors: Nicholas Cowdery - Author. Publisher: Allen & Unwin. Place of publication: St. Leonards, N.S.W.. Publication year: 2001. Page number: 98.
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