Re: Additional thought on Crocker's Laws

phil osborn (
Sat, 23 Oct 1999 22:32:05 PDT

>From: "David Lubkin" <>
>Subject: Re: Additional thought on Crocker's Laws
>Date: Fri, 22 Oct 1999 14:03:49 -0400
>Phil Osborn wrote:
> >Am I being paranoid. Perhaps not enuf. Consider that the
> >sections of the CDA specifically, as I recall, include ANY depiction of
> >child sexuality. This includes - and there have been prosecutions on
> >basis - comic art, furry art, etc., in which children obviously were not
> >employed. For that matter, the same kind of software that can age or
> >a person's face could just as easilly do the same for the entire body.
> >could digitize Deep Throat and run it through frame by frame and end up
> >90 year olds having sex - or 9 year olds.
>There are many reasons to object to this law. My own core objection is
>that it is effectively punishing people for their thoughts, rather than
>their actions. (Thou shalt not have erotic thoughts about children.)
>I would like to see a sharp change in our judicial system away from
>differentiating offenses on the basis of intent or premeditation. If I
>you, why does it matter whether I planned it ahead of time? Are you any
>or less dead?
>Similarly, I object to laws against drunk driving. The offense should be
>"impaired driving" or "reckless endangerment". If I hit you with my car,
>are just as injured whether I am impaired because I was drinking, I'm
>I have a bad cold, or I just broke up with my girlfriend.
>And why is conspiracy a crime? Why is "conspiracy to commit a misdemeanor"
>a felony?
Because the whole idea is to morally reform the miscreant. After all, the Bible equates lusting in ones heart to actual adultary. So our legal system follows from the religious morality - God KNOWS what is in your mind and heart, and so can the D.A.
It is true that the sort of person who kills random strangers for a thrill is much more a danger and less desireable to keep around in normal society than the person who made a tragic mistake in driving and killed someone "by accident." So, when we do manage to identify someone as a psychopath, or with severe moral impairment that puts everyone around them at general risk, then we should act accordingly in our own interest, personally and collectively. Punishment, however, had not been shown to have the slightest impact on changing someone's morals or in making them less accident prone. So, we punish people in order to get revenge and to make the psychopath think twice - as a deterent. And, of course, incarcertation as punishment also offers the advantage of putting them where they can't harm us. The real answer, however, is an explicit social contract that would simply restrict dangerous people to areas where they are not a threat (while they are paying restitution to any victims). As they demonstrate better appreciation for the consequences of their actions, their social credit rating would corresponding improve as the rates to get bonded, insurance, etc., would fall, improving their access to society, shopping malls, roads, etc.

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