Jeffs sentenced to life in prison

Warren Jeffs, leader of the Fundamentalist Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, has been found guilty of two counts of rape as an accomplice, and has been sentenced to life in prison.

As you can tell if you read through my essay on free will, I hold a deterministic view of the world (I am what philosophers call a compatabilist determinist), and this has important implications for issues of moral culpability, punishment, and rehabilitation. One of these implications is that moral responsibility is a difficult concept to pin down, leading to doubts about the value of punitive actions. However, there are cases in which a criminal is a danger to society, and ought to be imprisoned purely out of concern for the safety of that society’s citizens.

Jeffs’ case seems to fall in this category. Because he still holds the same beliefs that led him to commit his crimes, he is likely to commit similar crimes if allowed back into the outside world. Life in prison therefore seems to be the best decision in this case. Unfortunately, Jeffs will likely be seen by his church as a martyr, and his influence is unlikely to wane.

Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: