Outside the marginals

a commentary on the politics that followed the UK 2010 & 2015 elections

Backdoor Vigilantism

The home office have opened a consultation on “Community Remedies” for low-level crimes.

The new Sheriffs (aka PCCs) will be expected to consult with interested parties to create a “menu of remedies” that they will agree with the Chief Constable.  Police Officers will then invite “victims” to select a punishment from the “Community Remedies Menu”.  The “perp” – as I guess we will soon be calling as we get more Americanized – can then accept the sanction or face the “Criminal Justice System”.

This is backdoor vigilantism.

A criminal’s punishment will thus depend on:

  • The PCC area he lives in and who in that area is consulted.  (Will the consultation reveal huge demands for “The Stocks” or Sharia Law?)
  • The vindictiveness of the victim (If they just want everything to “go away”, the criminal may get off relatively scot-free, but if the victim is as nasty as the criminal, we could see vindictive punishments that might create a feud)

It should depend on:

  • The crime – including whether the particular crime is becoming a problem in a specific area justifying a deterrent element in any remedy
  • The criminal – are they evil or possibly mentally ill?

That should be assessed by professionals who have a wide view and are not emotionally involved.  Always assuming that we remain a society that wants to see a less criminal society rather than a society that is merely vindictive.

(Whoever dreamt this up – what were they on? – should be put in the stocks and pelted with rotten eggs)

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