“Condemn the Crime Not the Person,” June Tangney (577-579).
1. What is Tangney’s thesis?
Tangney argues against shaming punishment as an alternative punishment for light crimes and asserts that punish a person feel guilty is better for the society and is helpful for offenders (the person who committed the nonviolent crime) to change their behavior. She argues that shame does not make the offenders to change their behavior and does not make them repeat the crime. In contrast to shame, she argues that guilt is more effective because it makes offenders to think about their behavior and be able to change that.
2. Do you agree with her thesis? Explain
I agree with author thesis because makes offenders feel guilty with alternative punishments that match with their crime helps them reflect on their behavior and they might not do the crime again. First, shaming as an alternative punishment to the most people that commit a light crime make them feel ashamed but this does not give them the possibility to reflect on the crime that they have committed. Sell of light illegal drugs to others especially to adolescents is one example of a crime that shaming punishment, fine or jail time cannot make the offender understand the negative consequence of their crime. In the other hand, if the government makes people feel guilty for their offense with a punishment that matches with their crime, this kind of sentence is more able to change their behavior and really understand the negative side of their crime on society. Going back to the light illegal drug sellers’ example, if the government will sentence these offenders with campaigns antidrug among young people or rehabilitation centers for people that suffer from drug dependence, they really will understand the negative consequence of their offense on society. This kind of sentence is a good opportunity for offenders to give to the community their help to fix the pain and negative effect that they caused to the society. Also, at the same time, they reflect on what they did and might not do the crime again.