April 3, 2013
Punishment is the infliction of an unpleasant or negative experience on an offender in response to an offense. Today, punishment includes rehabilitation, deterrence, retribution, incapacitation, and reparation. Punishment is a penalty that results as a rule or law violation. Once a criminal has been punished through physical or economic sanctions then the criminal is considered square with his victim along with society.
Punishment is required for justice to be served. You have to do the time if you decide to commit the crime. Our society defines justice as a means of a victim seeking out the harshest punishment for their offenders. However, this often leaves the victim feeling empty and unsatisfied after getting what they sought out. Punishment of a criminal does not address the other needs that a victim has. It is only one step in the recovery process. Punishment cannot restore a victims loss, answer questions that they may have, take away their fears, or help them to make sense of what has happened to them. It also does not help to heal the emotional wounds for the victim either.
Our criminal justice is broken. We do not know how to fix it either. Violence is exploding out of control in our city streets. One suggestion on trying to mend this situation is to reward the criminal instead of punishing them. Convicted criminals are to be given monthly checks in order to prevent them from committing more crimes.
Corrections: The Fundamentals B. Foster (2006)