A or B?
A
65.4% (208)
65.4% (208)
B
27.4% (87)
27.4% (87)
no opinion
6% (19)
6% (19)
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Poll: would you rather an innocent person got punished or a guilty person let free?

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the theoretical scenario is that some one has had there house broken into, everything that wasn't stolen was smashed to pieces and the thief even made off with the victims car.
would you rather
A. the thief got away with it and no one was punished or
B. both the thief and a perfectly innocent person (never has committed a crime, probably will never a crime) both get equally punished for the crime?

Morally A but Realistically B.

That's how we reason anyway.

Probably B, it sucks that an innocent person would get mixed up in it all, but if the thief goes free, what's stopping him from doing it again and again and again?

A! no contest. If you throw away all the moral questions with throwing an innocent person behind bars you got to remember one thing.

If someone is put away for a crime, we stop looking for the real criminal. either way the guilty party gets away free. If we convict an innocent person with false evidence, we could no longer use that evidence in the future to help us convict the real criminal.

the fact that we need to be sure that someone is guilty of a crime before convicting them is a fault of our legal system, but it's designed that way to protect innocent people from getting sent to jail on someone's "Gut feeling".

A, because why should an innocent person suffer even more than he should do because of another's crimes? But B is what realistically happens, due to the retarded criminal system, random and almost hilariously inconsistent justice, and lack of morals in society.

Yeah, I'd go A.

Ruining an innocent persons life over a mistake or fuck up is really shitty. As for the criminal, there is always the chance he'll turn his life around and change his ways.

A, obviously. If the thief is dumb enough to take advantage of this lucky streak and steal again, he will likely be caught. Yes this means there will be two victims, but this is what insurance is for people. I have much more of a problem with wasting years of an innocent man/woman's life in prison, even if it puts the real criminal behind bars too. Especially with the revolving door we have. All we'll be doing is making another criminal.

Then what happens? After they serve their time we'll have two criminals out and about instead of two. This question isn't just that of morality, but simple logic as well. Time is worth more than items, and two criminals are worse than one.

A

Because in a Castle Law state, there's the hope that the thief will break into the house of a gun owner who's home, and said gun owner will legally kill the thief.

A, because I am not a terrible human being. Well, not that much.

Besides, would YOU be happy to be that innocent person?

edit

Regnes:
Probably B, it sucks that an innocent person would get mixed up in it all, but if the thief goes free, what's stopping him from doing it again and again and again?

Being caught the next time?

OT: A

I find it interesting that the majority seems to take the position of A, when B is how our judicial systems work.

I myself chose B simply because B punishes the criminal, which is the point of the judicial system.

Regnes:
Probably B, it sucks that an innocent person would get mixed up in it all, but if the thief goes free, what's stopping him from doing it again and again and again?

I feel like your opinion would change if YOU were that innocent person.

I don't believe in vengeance, so for me punishment is only useful as a deterrent.

Criminal punishment works as a deterrent even though criminals know they don't get caught 100% of the time. Just knowing that they have a chance to be caught is enough to deter most would-be criminals.

If guilty people are sometimes found innocent, that is the same as a cop not catching them in the first place.

Fuck punishment, i just want my stuff back. Justice is too expensive.

Since this is a hypothetical situation, I am going to go with my hypothetical answer: A

Obviously, it would be great if the thief is captured/convicted after burglarizing another person's home.
I guess it depends on the punishment, but B is like saying "well, you can take a shit on the thief's chest, but keep in mind that a shit of the same size and smelliness will be shat on your chest as well", which is just really shitty.

Edit: Punishment is there to disuade people from behaving in negative ways and to balance the moral playing field if they do behave negatively. Punishing someone who has done nothing wrong, is worse than not punishing someone who has done something wrong (imo).

Damn it I made the wrong vote! I think that the protection of one innocent from false punishment is worth a hundred guilty men going free. Exaggeration, yes, but I really really agree with the idea that justice should be based around the protection of the innocent, not the punishment of the guilty.

Oops, I voted for the wrong one.

I'd want to let the guilty person free - if you falsely charge an innocent person, you are doing then a greater wrong than letting a guilty person free.

Really? This is even a question?

Edit: That people aren't answering correctly?

I'm going to have to decline answering your query man. For you see, I don't grasp the logic of it.

Yeah, this has never been asked on the internet before...

I pick option 'Fuck the law, sacrifice innocents, and look good doin it!'

for the lulz

Let's take the book of Leviticus, word for word, seriously too while we're at at!

zehydra:
I find it interesting that the majority seems to take the position of A, when B is how our judicial systems work.

I myself chose B simply because B punishes the criminal, which is the point of the judicial system.

I was under the impression that the point of the judicial system was to protect innocent, law-abiding people. It sucks if they don't punish the guilty, but isn't it even worst if the system not only fails to protect the innocent, but actively punishes them for things they did not do? Not only is it failing in its responsibilities to society, its actively working against the members of the society it is sworn to protect.

I'd rather let the guilty person go free. Putting someone in prison essentially completely fucks up the rest of their entire lives.

I would choose A. The innocent person shouldn't be punished no matter how much you might like to punish the bad guy.

bz316:

zehydra:
I find it interesting that the majority seems to take the position of A, when B is how our judicial systems work.

I myself chose B simply because B punishes the criminal, which is the point of the judicial system.

I was under the impression that the point of the judicial system was to protect innocent, law-abiding people. It sucks if they don't punish the guilty, but isn't it even worst if the system not only fails to protect the innocent, but actively punishes them for things they did not do? Not only is it failing in its responsibilities to society, its actively working against the members of the society it is sworn to protect.

It would be worse, but that is not what's happening here. The system under plan B both protects the innocent and punishes the innocent at the same time. It protects the innocent in the sense that it punishes the criminal who committed the crime, and therefore protects the rest of the civilian population from further crime from that individual, while at the same time punishes a single innocent individual.

Trippy Turtle:
I would choose A. The innocent person shouldn't be punished no matter how much you might like to punish the bad guy.

Ah, so you'd prefer Anarchy then? If an innocent person should NEVER be punished, then we have to completely ditch the judicial system since it is not 100% accurate and puts innocent people in prison and sometimes to death.

zehydra:
I find it interesting that the majority seems to take the position of A, when B is how our judicial systems work.

I myself chose B simply because B punishes the criminal, which is the point of the judicial system.

What country do you live in? I'm asking this because in America the burden of proof lies with the prosecution, which I believe puts the system firmly in the A category. Trial by jury also nudges it that way as do the current rights from wrongful search and seizure. It is terribly hard to get put away in America these days, and the system is clearly slanted towards the defendant versus the prosecution.

B. Let's be honest: We're all one lapse of judgment away from fucking up. I feel giving a pass to one person who's actually guilty of a crime wouldn't really hurt my concious-- especially since I don't really think locking somebody away into a big steel box for a while will in any way help their disposition, if their crime was indeed due to them as a person and not just one fuck-up.

Limecake:
A! no contest. If you throw away all the moral questions with throwing an innocent person behind bars you got to remember one thing.

If someone is put away for a crime, we stop looking for the real criminal. either way the guilty party gets away free. If we convict an innocent person with false evidence, we could no longer use that evidence in the future to help us convict the real criminal.

the fact that we need to be sure that someone is guilty of a crime before convicting them is a fault of our legal system, but it's designed that way to protect innocent people from getting sent to jail on someone's "Gut feeling".

Reread it, in one scenario the guilty person is free, in the other both the guilty and the innocent are punished.

It would depend on the punishment. But B. Vengance is an evolutionarily positive feature of humanity.
With no retribution, many people would not be afraid to take advantage of us.

Revnak:

zehydra:
I find it interesting that the majority seems to take the position of A, when B is how our judicial systems work.

I myself chose B simply because B punishes the criminal, which is the point of the judicial system.

What country do you live in? I'm asking this because in America the burden of proof lies with the prosecution, which I believe puts the system firmly in the A category. Trial by jury also nudges it that way as do the current rights from wrongful search and seizure. It is terribly hard to get put away in America these days, and the system is clearly slanted towards the defendant versus the prosecution.

My point is that guilt cannot be proven, so to some extent in these judicial systems some innocent people are going to jail. That much is certain.

Why doesn't the poll reflect the title? I thought A was "an innocent person got punished" and B was "a guilty person free". And so I mistakenly voted B.

CAPTCHA: know your rights

zehydra:

Revnak:

zehydra:
I find it interesting that the majority seems to take the position of A, when B is how our judicial systems work.

I myself chose B simply because B punishes the criminal, which is the point of the judicial system.

What country do you live in? I'm asking this because in America the burden of proof lies with the prosecution, which I believe puts the system firmly in the A category. Trial by jury also nudges it that way as do the current rights from wrongful search and seizure. It is terribly hard to get put away in America these days, and the system is clearly slanted towards the defendant versus the prosecution.

My point is that guilt cannot be proven, so to some extent in these judicial systems some innocent people are going to jail. That much is certain.

Guilt beyond a reasonable doubt can be (and yes I know what that means). I think that is far enough really, but I am anything but a skeptic. I have a vague memory that you are though, so I suppose that may be the reasoning behind our differences in opinion here.

DAMMIT I clicked the wrong answer. I wish that you could fix your vote, because I definitely don't want to vote for B.

Just add one to A and subtract one for B, because B is fundamentally retarded.

A.

In choice A: There's a greater than zero percent chance the thief won't reoffend.

In choice B: There's a one hundred percent chance that an innocent person will be punished for something he didn't do.

I put a criminal reoffending on the same level as punishing an innocent person, so statistically, I pick A.

zehydra:

Trippy Turtle:
I would choose A. The innocent person shouldn't be punished no matter how much you might like to punish the bad guy.

Ah, so you'd prefer Anarchy then? If an innocent person should NEVER be punished, then we have to completely ditch the judicial system since it is not 100% accurate and puts innocent people in prison and sometimes to death.

I was under the impression the question was about punishing a man you knew was innocent. But yes I'd take anarchy over punishing innocent people to get at the bad ones.

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