Author Topic: Random Thoughts Thread  (Read 132146 times)

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #660 on: July 15, 2016, 10:18:51 pm »
Had a talk with a friend, and he brought up the following thought experiment. (We were talking about laws against harassment and causing emotional and mental pain and trauma, and about whether those should be put on the books or not. He was against "legislating words" and "making laws to protect people's feelings" and so had a lot to say about how those laws could be abused.)

There are three people before the court for rape. Two of them are rapists, one of them is innocent. There are only two choices before you: put them all in jail, or let all of them go free. Which one do you choose?

Offline Ironchew

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #661 on: July 15, 2016, 11:01:20 pm »
Had a talk with a friend, and he brought up the following thought experiment. (We were talking about laws against harassment and causing emotional and mental pain and trauma, and about whether those should be put on the books or not. He was against "legislating words" and "making laws to protect people's feelings" and so had a lot to say about how those laws could be abused.)

There are three people before the court for rape. Two of them are rapists, one of them is innocent. There are only two choices before you: put them all in jail, or let all of them go free. Which one do you choose?

Seeing as how the dichotomy of convicting them all or setting them all free doesn't bear any resemblance to our justice system, I reject that thought experiment's setup.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #662 on: July 16, 2016, 12:50:49 am »
Chewy, that's not how thought experiments work.

Personally, I think that letting them all go seems to be closer to the concept of justice. Making sure that innocent people aren't punished for crimes they didn't do is more important.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #663 on: July 16, 2016, 01:51:08 am »
Chewy, that's not how thought experiments work.

Personally, I think that letting them all go seems to be closer to the concept of justice. Making sure that innocent people aren't punished for crimes they didn't do is more important.

Most justice systems don't work in that way, even though they like to claim they do. Instead, criminal laws seek to be efficient and pragmatic: if 1 innocent person goes to prison, it's worth it to catch the 99 bad guys. Three innocent, well, you still have 97 bad guys. I doubt lawmakers or the system would care until you got to about 15 or 20. When you make exceptions to protect good people, several bad people take advantage of the exception to go free. It all comes down to how does one write a law, how do courts interpret the law, and how does it all play out over a series of cases. You can't get this perfect: the only way to keep every good person from going to jail is to prevent every bad person from going to jail as well. The question is where do you draw the line, and the answer is that nobody fucking knows. Because of this, lawmakers, judges, and prosecutors really don't have a problem sending innocent people to prison, because it is an inevitable part of any criminal justice system.

But Lizard's post reminds me of a hypothetical in my criminal law class. A man savagely rapes a minor teenage, minor girl. After fleeing the scene of the crime via car, with police in hot pursuit, he crashes the vehicle doing extensive damage to his junk and causing mild brain damage that largely removes his violent and savage tendencies. Because of this, there is literally no chance that he will ever rape again: he is, by account of his accident, 100% rehabilitated. Should the court dismiss his case or try him for raping the girl?

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #664 on: July 16, 2016, 01:54:55 am »
My answer for the Queen's scenario:

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No matter what happens, no matter what my last words may end up being, I want everyone to claim that they were:
"If you strike me down, I shall become more powerful than you could possibly imagine."
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #665 on: July 16, 2016, 02:00:20 am »
My answer for the Queen's scenario:

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #666 on: July 16, 2016, 09:42:43 am »
I'd say punish him for the act, however, punishment needs to fit both the crime and the risk for re-offense.  In this case, the guy's as close to a zero risk level as you can get, and a lighter sentence would reflect that; had the accident not occurred, his risk would be higher and he'd get a far harsher sentence.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #667 on: July 16, 2016, 11:56:53 am »
Kill him.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #668 on: July 16, 2016, 01:12:12 pm »
Kill him.

The death penalty is kind of fucked up. Just saying.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #669 on: July 16, 2016, 01:19:17 pm »
Kill him.

The death penalty is kind of fucked up. Just saying.

I completely agree, and I'd never wish it upon anyone.

Except that particular hypothetical man.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #670 on: July 16, 2016, 05:01:26 pm »
Ideally, I'd say let him go. In reality though, I'm not sure how you could know that his violent tendencies really were brain damaged out of him. Granted, I'm not exactly on the cutting edge of neurology, but I'm pretty sure there's no way to analyse someone's brain to determine whether or not they'll ever do something violent or rapey again. So yeah, you'd still have to throw him in prison, even if that were true.

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #671 on: July 16, 2016, 05:24:56 pm »
Does anyone here think this question would be as difficult to answer if the U.S. prison system and facilities weren't broken and shitty?  This is a genuine question.

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #672 on: July 16, 2016, 09:50:05 pm »
Good question. I've never known a prison system that wasn't broken and shitty though, so I'm really not sure if I can even answer that.
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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #673 on: July 17, 2016, 09:36:47 pm »
So I'm training to become a history teacher and I realized I'm gonna piss off a bunch of parents when I do become a teacher.  That's gonna be fun.

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Re: Random Thoughts Thread
« Reply #674 on: July 17, 2016, 10:13:29 pm »
So I'm training to become a history teacher and I realized I'm gonna piss off a bunch of parents when I do become a teacher.  That's gonna be fun.

The thing is, don't be a hardass about students goofing off, be chill with them for the most part, grade objectively and fairly (multiple choice anyone), and you'll be fine. Most of the teacher's in highschool that I remember getting a bad rap were the authoritarian type: they'd piss off the children, Johnny cried to mom and dad, mom and dad got pissed at teacher, life sucked for everyone. The chill teachers didn't have it as bad, and in many ways had more civil classes because there's just something about rules that make them fun to break.
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