I was inspired to write this post based on a conversation that I had with a person who I work with when he said, “I know crime, criminals and how they work and operate, better then anyone else… why waste time at university when all they can do is give that psychological mumbo-jumbo, and tell us that keeping criminals out of jail is the best place for them.” This notion that everyone knows the word of criminals and that straight forward and “get tough” policies are the answers to curbing crime are fooling only themselves. What my co-worker fails to see is that his analogy serves no greater good to himself, nor to the whole of mankind. For the armchair Criminologist, the bulk of his source of information comes from the media, a source that in itself is nothing but an ad machine with its only purpose of selling news that is condensed, canned and is usually void of any sufficient facts and absolute truths. The rest of his reasoning comes from his personal experiences, he told me. This transmission from the media of events, repeated, stacked one after another, amplifies the scope of criminal activity overall, creating a distorted and exaggerated reality of what our world is really. With this reasoning, it is not a huge surprise to me that my co-worker would appreciate a government that would extend this fallacy even further by offering solutions to this media driven wave of crime, and offer up political solutions in the form of fighting back with a get tough on crime initiative.
I asked my co-worker to view this video, hoping that he can see that this solution is not a very practical one, and that tough on crime policies have a darker side to them that seems to add to the problems rather than solving them.
After he viewed it, he stated, “how could she be one hundred percent in the right when ALL of the politicians say otherwise.”
So, I offered my co-worker this: after you have been incarcerated for a crime that you committed, I will meet with you in front of your cell bars and explain to you in full detail, the woman’s philosophy from the video, for you because we will have lots of time to do that.