Law on criminal activities has been changing to accommodate the new and emerging human rights, but some issues have come up. As the author of the article, Jeff Jacoby states, during the era of Boston Puritan forefathers use corporal punishment as a strategy of curbing criminal activities in the society. However, even if he argues that such measures were effective, they are no longer in use and calls for the adoption of some of these measures in the current law courts. I do not agree with his argument because even if criminals are currently detained in cages, they still have a chance for reforming. There is no reason as to why one should be subjected to corporal punishment instead of being sent to prison. The current jurisdictions have a lot of options for judging and deciding cases involving criminal activities, and some can be out on parole, giving them a chance to reform and participate in economic development (Turner 40). The sanctions of the Puritans were humiliating and did not consider human rights and freedoms and should not be adopted by the current jurisdictions.
The author's piece of writing is targeted a particular audience, people in power who work in the judicial justice system or lawmakers. From Jacobys work, the pictures represent his views and desires to see criminals being prosecuted the way the Puritans used to do as he values these type of punishment as the best in the bid of deterring members of the society from being involved in unlawful acts. These are just but assumptions that Jacoby makes and I cannot agree with him. What is worrying me is the reasons as to why the members of the society could still be involved in criminal activities and other punishable vices that could not go unpunished during the Puritan era such as prostitution. If corporal punishment would have been a success, then it could not have been replaced by the incarceration. This type of punishment was done away with most probably because it was considered ineffective and the authorities decided to look for alternative and modernized ways such as the introduction of prison cages. These are just but assumptions that Jacoby makes and I cannot agree with him. The author used a critical tone in finding the faults in the current criminal justice system but has not convinced me in any way.
Jacoby has given a lot of facts that does not have any evidence, making it difficult to be believed to be true. For instance, he explains that there are 1.6 million Americans behind bars because of the crimes that they committed. However, he has not informed us about the sources of this fact. I am left wondering whether this is a fact or an opinion. Even if he has adequately discussed the reasons as to why he supports the reintroduction of some of these laws into the current criminal justice system, his facts are not convincing enough. The article is well organized, introduces us to the corporal punishments that the Puritans used to practice and the reasons as to why they decided to use such measures. To ensure that the audience has understood his explanation, he used a pictorial representation. The two pictures for a cage and that of Joseph Gatchell have a logical appeal because they enable us to understand better what the author is trying to convey (Jacoby Para. 1). Critical analysis of Gatchells picture gives the reader an emotional appeal. Under the laws on human rights, everybody is supposed to be treated equally, and there is no need of subjecting some individuals to public torture for the commitment of a crime.
Jacoby, Jeff. "Bring Back Flogging." Barnet. Current Issues and Enduring Questions. Boston 192 (1997).
Turner, Jennifer. "Disciplinary engagements with prisons, prisoners and the penal system." Geography Compass 7.1 (2013): 35-45.
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