New criminal laws are based on prejudice, not research

Most people know that punishment does not work. Yet is takes a boat load of politicians and lawyers to try to convince Stephen Harper, the Prime Minister. Most recently Quebec’s Justice Minister tried again by telling Mr.  Harper this:  “I don’t recognize myself in this Canada.”  I feel the same.

The new federal government “tough on crime” bill is not only wasteful but is opposed by academics, most provincial premiers and the entire legal community. Hundreds of brilliant people are asking this basic question: Why on earth would a government impose stricter penalties on criminals and particularly young offenders when all the research shows that this does not work? Everyone knows that a long term solution to crime is restoration and rehabilitation, not punishment.  Everyone knows this, except apparently Stephen Harper. Or worse, perhaps he knows this but simply wants to get more votes by making the public think he is keeping them safer. Yikes.  (Source: Globe & Mail Nov 23, 2011)

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