reply to post by cognoscente
That's a very well thought-out post, I hope some moderator gives you an applause. I agree completely that more money should go towards social
programs that give people a better chance at rising above a life of crime.
You mentioned tax increases, and questioned why people get upset when taxes are raised. I, for one, would not get upset by increased taxes if the
money would be spent wisely. The problem I see isn't necessarily the taking of our money, it's the misuse of it.
Our money goes to silly things like pork barrel projects, ever-increasing salaries for the government, and bailout programs for businesses that have
utterly failed to remain relevant.
Meanwhile, funds that are set aside to "help society" end up being misspent on a flawed welfare system that traps people on government money. Other
money that actually gets set aside for schools becomes lining in the pockets of teachers' unions. Less and less of it goes towards job creation,
community revitalization projects, and school supplies.
If the government would use our money wisely, they probably wouldn't need to raise taxes. And if they were investing it in the country's future
instead of the country's elite, the could probably actually afford to lower them.
Sadly, there are always going to be people who won't conform to society. It's quite simply not feasible to let those people loose on the public.
When somebody is convicted of a crime, there needs to be a decision made between three choices, which I'll get to in a moment.
First, I want to state that those people - the ones who cannot obey fair laws, who are opposed to proper justice, and who show a disregard for society
- should not be raising children. Period. If you commit a violent crime, or a major theft or fraud, then you should be required to surrender your
children to the care of somebody with higher moral standards than yourself. Future children should not be allowed to remain in your custody after
Gangsters raise gangsters. Violent people raise violent kids, who end up committing violent crimes. We need to stop assuming that unfit people can be
fit parents - they can't be, and when we think they can, we condemn their children to grow up as part of the problem.
Now, as promised, I think we should use the following three ways to handle these criminals:
1. Help them. Drug users are the best example of this. They shouldn't be sitting in cell blocks. Who does that help? The drug user becomes hardened
and further isolated from the norms of society, and society must then cope with that person after their inevitable release. Instead of incarceration,
mandatory rehabilitation should be the sentence. It's also important that society rethinks what should constitute a "drug offense," but that's
completely off topic for now.
2. Punish them. Violent criminals, career thieves, and sexual predators are the scum of society. I understand that everyone makes mistakes, but when
you are convicted of a crime that harms society or someone else in it, you should do serious time.
Judges have far too much leniency to let
people go with light sentences. Somebody who gets thrown in jail for pickpocketing shouldn't be let out a month later. That takes the risk that they
will move on to mugging or armed robbery. Following the punishment, they should be given a short period of time to relocate. Letting them continue to
live in the same neighborhoods, with the same bad influences, just encourages them to slip back into the same criminal lifestyle.
3. Remove them. Repeat offenders wander our streets daily. Why can they do this? They are repeat offenders
. By the very definition, they will
commit crimes again. Many people hail the "three strikes" policy as a way to crack down on repeat offenders, while others claim it is a major policy
failure. It's shortcoming is the fact that it still lets repeat offenders out. It gives them a chance to repeat their offense, even after they've
shown no willingness to stop their offending. After the second felony, it's time to do life behind bars (or fry.) People may say that this would lead
to high incarceration rates, but that would be a temporary issue if criminals weren't being left to raise future generations of criminals.
Perhaps my ideas are flawed. Maybe they are too draconian for today's society. I don't know, and I'd be willing to embrace better ideas if they
were presented to me. What I do know is this: If my options are to go after criminals or go after guns, I'll be choosing to go after criminals every
There's simply no reason to assume that disarming law-abiding citizens will protect them from law-violating criminals. Simply observing what has
happened in cities where this has been attempted prove the failed logic of such policies.
I just have to disagree with one thing: Psychological evaluations for gun buyers. This merely serves as a major inconvenience for law abiding
citizens. In addition, consider the following.
When setting up the judicial system, our government made it the duty of the prosecutor to provide the burden of proof against a defendant. In a civil
case, the plaintiff must provide a preponderance of evidence against the defendant. These truths indicate that our country's justice system is
founded on the idea that a person is innocent until proven guilty, as we all know.
I think it would be a disgrace to force people to prove their sanity in order to exercise their right - and I do say right, because the amendment is
titled "the right
to bare arms" - to bare arms. If evidence against their sanity is already available, then by all means, that person should
not be armed.
However, the law-abiding citizen, who has done no wrong and displayed no past psychological problems, should not be the ones who are targeted by
attempts to stop gun violence. They are, quite simply, not the ones committing the gun crimes.