April 26, 2008

Defining deviance

From a post by Armed Liberal at Winds of Change:-
[W]e are increasingly funneling our responses to bad behavior through the criminal justice system in ways that seem - well, just bad to me.

I street-raced cars as a kid - a misdemeanor today. I made guncotton in AP chemistry in high school - God knows what I'd have been charged with today. I think that we have created a complex of laws that makes all of us criminals to some extent, and one aspect of this is that there are probably a bunch of decent kids out there with felony records - arrests or convictions.

And to the extent that those records block them from having any decent opportunities in life... we've just created a cohort that has no choice but to live on the margins of society.