CJS 200 Week 2 Assignment Inside Criminal Law

CJS 200 Week 2 Assignment Inside Criminal Law - Inside...

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Inside Criminal Law By Brandon Ashley In this day and age criminal law has come a long way from its beginning, when the U.S. Constitution was first written. Criminal Law does two things for the citizens of the United States and that is: to mitigate legal requirements of a society, also to preserve and encourage social values. Without criminal law in effect our society would be a feeding ground for career criminals here in the U.S. and abroad. Criminal Law’s two main functions are: “to protect and punish”, also too “maintain and teach.” (Larry K. Gaines, 2001) Today’s court system is based off of these two functions. The first function, to protect and punish, was set to protect individuals from criminal harm. Criminal harm is referred to an assortment of harms that can be put into one of two categories. 1. “Harms to individual citizens’ physical safety and property, such as the harm caused by murder, theft, or arson. 2. Harms to society’s interests collectively, such as the harm caused by unsafe foods or consumer products, a polluted environment, or poorly constructed buildings.” (Larry K. Gaines, 2001, p. 79)
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Many different types of crimes can be associated to the first category. Almost every crime committed in one way or another falls into this category. Even though some crimes have different degrees or grades at which they are judged on, punishment is given according to those grades or degrees at which the crime was committed. The second category has been proven to be somewhat challenging when it comes to evaluating the collective interest of society. The second function of criminal law is to “Maintain and Teach: the social function of the law.” (Larry K. Gaines, 2001, pp. 79-81) This function was set to convey the morals of the public and to teach culture limitations. Over time views on morality can change in a society. What a society thought was right or wrong then, might not be what a society thinks is right and wrong today. Basically, people change overtime, so does their beliefs and their morals from right and wrong. Many scholars think that criminal law not only sets the boundaries of society, but it teaches them as well. Teaching culture limitations can be referred to as learning a lesson when caught doing a crime. For instance, the criminal justice system punishes those who commit crimes and in return this teaches the society what’s right and wrong. Every law that citizens know today comes from the American criminal law and its written
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CJS 200 Week 2 Assignment Inside Criminal Law - Inside...

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