My theory for the reasoning of punishment has two main goals which are to provide justice for the victims and a lesson to the convicted. When a judge sits in preparation to initiate sentencing they have to go through numerous thought processes because of the uniqueness of every case. Considerations such as what are they trying to accomplish with the punishment and who would benefit from such a sentence. General factors like the age of the convicted and the heinousness of the crime committed matters as well. When a criminal is sentence it is reasoned by retribution, deterrence, incapacitation, or rehabilitation. One of the types of sentences that can be given to a criminal can be in the form of retribution. Retribution can also be seen as saying an eye for an eye for example if a kid is caught stealing a candy bar from a convenient store then the punishment may be that they have to pay for it somehow. This type of sentence is mostly seen in death penalty cases today such as a life for a life. “The law of "an eye for an eye" is usually called the law of retribution, or "lex talionis" (Latin, lex [law] and talio [like]; the punishment is like the injury), or the law of equivalency.” (Rodríguez, 1998) Another type of sentence given to a criminal is deterrence and in lamens terms it is the use of punishment as a threat to deter people from offending. Deterrence can be divided into three separate categories. “Specific deterrence, as used in criminal justice, refers to crime prevention achieved through instilling fear in the specific individual being punished such that they refrain from future violation of the law; also referred to as individual deterrence. General deterrence, as used in criminal justice, refers to crime prevention achieved through instilling fear in the general population through the punishment of offenders. Incapacitation is considered by some to be a subset of specific deterrence. Incapacitation aims to prevent future crimes not by rehabilitating...
Cited: Kelly, E. (2010). Punishment. Retrieved from Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosphy: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/punishment/#2
LII. (2012). § 3553. IMPOSITION OF A SENTENCE. Retrieved from Legal Information Institue: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/18/3553.html
Parkinson, R. D. (2002). Specific Deterrence. Retrieved from Online Dictionary of the Social Science: http://bitbucket.icaap.org/dict.pl?term=SPECIFIC%20DETERRENCE
Rehabilitation. (2012). Retrieved from Encyclopædia Britannica: http://www.britannica.com/EBchecked/topic/483544/punishment/272342/Rehabilitation
Rodríguez, Á. M. (1998, December 10). An Eye for an Eye. Retrieved from Biblical Research Institute: http://www.adventistbiblicalresearch.org/Biblequestions/eyeforeye.htm
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