Assignment: Punishment Research Paper

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Assignment: Punishment Research Paper

Hannah Jackson


From the early history of civilization crime has existed and for centuries societies have established laws meant to protect it’s citizens from crime. Such laws have been continuously enforced in an effort to maintain order. Punishment has been in place for those who act in what society has set out as devious acts. In the United States, acts of deviant behavior has been a social issued surrounded with controversy. Punishments for those who have been found guilty of devious behavior are dealt with within four types of punishment: retribution, deterrence, rehabilitation, and societal protection. These four forms of punishment are what the American society use in an attempt to cease crime.

Justification is required for the practice of punishment within the United States. Often times this justification is imposing some form of harm to those who break the law, however the truth behind punishment is not if it should hurt the individual, but rather if the justification of the punishment makes sense for the crime. Take for instance the kidnapping, rape and murder of college student Dru Sjodin caused by Alfonso Rodriguez Jr. Six months prior to this crime Rodriguez had been released from a 23 year prison sentence for a stabbing and attempted rape, and had previously to that crime pled guilty to a rape. Because Dru was kidnapped in North Dakota and brought to Minnesota where her body was later found this crime was dealt with on a federal level. Both ND and MN are no death penalty states, however since the case was turned over to the US government, and the punishment given for this crime was the death penalty. In these types of situations society expects the criminal justice system to punish the offender to the maximum extent of the law. The questions then become -what is the proper punishment for this crime and who has the right to impose the punishment? This; however imposes societies...
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