The American System of Criminal Justice
Should rehabilitation be valued over retribution in the United States criminal justice system? This is a very subjective question which calls for opinions and doubts. Retribution operates under the belief that the criminal cannot be reformed or rehabilitated and that the punishment serves the purpose so that the criminal will not want to commit the crime again or in the first place. However, that does not always work. There will be no deterrent effect if the public considers the punishment to be discrimination or persecution. Rehabilitation should be most definitely be valued over retribution in the United States criminal justice system at least for carefully selected persons who are only guilty of specific types of crimes (not including; serial killers, sex offenders, terrorists etc…). Our society is better off with a greater number of productive members. Social welfare is one reason to why rehabilitation should be valued over retribution. Prisoners do not do society any good. So, therefore, there should be a focus on rehabilitating criminals and releasing them back into society for the sake of making society better as a whole. The recidivism rate is so high anyway that simple punish only creates more problems for our society and economy. Violence breeds violence. The punishment environments, particularly for violent criminals, in the United States are terrible places where once must become increasingly adept at criminal activity in order to simply survive. The culture within prison systems is not one which encourages proper and just behavior, but rather one which encourages prisoners to become more immersed in a criminal culture. A focus on punishment only exacerbates this and creates increasingly violent criminals as opposed to solving our problems. Rehabilitation is More Economical. We spend a great deal of taxpayer money on punishment systems in the United...