Jeff Jacoby

Topics: Criminology, Criminal justice, Prison Pages: 3 (898 words) Published: March 17, 2011
Jeff Jacoby, a columnist for the Boston Globe, is the author of an article called “Bring Back Flogging” that suggests the reinstatement of flogging as a criminal punishment. Jacoby argues that the use of flogging is a better form of punishment for criminals because it would not only help save money, but also provide a better form of punishment for some criminals. In his argument, Jacoby fails to address issues at the point they are presented while also stating some irrelevant facts, which does somewhat hinder his ethical appeal. However, Jacoby does include many helpful facts and comparisons that help to justify his thinking, which makes his argument pretty valid. Jacoby starts off his argument by referring back to the Puritan times, when flogging was a common punishment for criminals. He gives specific examples of the punishments by talking about specific people, dating back to the Puritan times, who received punishments like whipping in public or branding of body parts. These examples, although valid and helpful, are not the best examples to rely on because Jacoby is assuming that the audience finds at least some of these acts to be acceptable. Jacoby then reminds the reader that flogging was repealed in 1972 and has been out of fashion for 150 years (193). Once again, Jacoby provides a valid and helpful fact, but fails to address the idea that flogging was appealed because a big enough group of people did not agree with the use of it. Instead, he assumes the audience agrees with the idea that flogging is Stiles 2

acceptable and begins to compare imprisonment, the current form of punishment, to flogging. Imprisonment, according to Jacoby, is not only ineffective, but too expensive. Jacoby states facts like the 250 percent increase since 1980 in prison inmates, and 300,000 dollar cost of each inmate that help to prove that imprisonment is expensive (193). Next, he praises the use of flogging by pointing out how ineffective flogging could be in terms of...
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