Monday, June 05, 2023

The Reality of Rehabilitating Criminals

USA—I’ve been employed within the criminal justice system since 1967.  I took two years off when I was drafted into the Army.  As a cop I’ve relentlessly chased criminals.  As a private investigator  I have conducted defense investigations for the innocent, overcharged and of course the guilty.  I’ve majored in Criminal Justice and Psychology at UIC.  

Since humankind graced this earth every conceivable effort has been tried to reform criminals.  Beating, torture, incarceration, drug experiments, hypnosis, kindness and forgiveness has been tried over thousands of years. If a magic formula existed we’d be using it.  Frankly it would provide these lost souls with a better, richer and more enjoyable lives.  There is no known successful rehabilitation cure for violent criminals.

There are those people that have little respect for law.  They hate government control and engage in victimless crimes.  They seem to function without too much difficulty. 

Then there are the petty offenders that lie, cheat and steal at various opportunities.  They occasionally get caught but continue on as nuisance offenders. They are a minimal threat to public safety.  We don’t really know if they go straight or just find better ways to escape detection.  

We must separate the two types of offenders.  Mala in se (the singular is malum in se) is a term that signifies crime that is considered wrong in and of itself. The phrase is Latin and literally means wrong in itself. This class of crime is contrasted by crimes mala prohibita, the Latin term for "wrong because they are prohibited."

The mala prohibita type offenders are no threat threat to public safety.  Their activities aggravate the the control freak politicians of our society.  The casual drug abuser, gambler, or even the guy that feels he’s above obeying gun laws since he values personal safety and rejects the law that sought to keep him vulnerable to criminals.  

The most troubling criminals are the ones that relish their  cruelty and the power over, children, the weak or elderly.  They are the violent ones.  I include residential burglars because they often rape, injure or murder the victims that discover these home invaders.  

We must quit fooling ourselves and end the wasted efforts on offender reformation. The only things that stops these people is keeping them locked away from society, old age, disability or death.  We know that criminals like everyone slow down as they age.  

Some politicians love giving contracts to non-profits that claim rehabilitation success.  Either the politicians are ignorant Pollyanna types or they’re getting financial kickbacks from the non-profit’s peddling snake oil. 

Unrelated to the rehabilitation fraud our drug laws only create crime, violence and public corruption.  Drug addicts confine their crimes to raising money to feed their addiction.  The reality of total legalization would put the manufacturers, dealers and  corrupt public officials out of business in a single day.  The illicit drugs cost no more than sugar or tea to produce.  It’s more than obvious that public corruption has been fueling the Drug War for decades. When alcohol prohibition ended America’s crime rates bottomed out.  The same will happen if we ever come to our senses and end the senseless Drug War.



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