Monday, September 25, 2006

News and Blogs Together! 9-25-06

Only a couple of items in blogland and in the news each today that I wanted to pass on so I pulled them together for this post. One is a study from Canada correlating increased Alcoholics Anonymous membership and decreased homicide rates in Ontario from 1968 to 1991. For every new AA member per 100,000 people, the rate dropped 0.3-0.5%. Applied only to men, but given the prevalence, we'll take it (and wait for those new beer company-funded community service ads). . . .In the midst of describing his part in a BBC documentary on Billy the Kid, Joel Jacobsen at Judging Crimes draws some interesting parallels between the Wild West and today's inner cities. . . . From Grits for Breakfast, yet another study so counterintuitive, we'll forget it immediately. Given the choice of jail or probation for DWI, 43% of first-time Harris Co., TX (Houston) offenders chose jail as the less severe option, easier to complete. So much for treatment. Past studies have shown similar results across other offenses. Law-abiders can't imagine how this could be true, but that's because they're law-abiders. . . . Not really surprising but a study in Alcoholism finds that people with alcohol problems who stay sober for the first year after seeking treatment are more likely to be alive 15 years later than those who have trouble that first year. . . . Finally, another take on that OH law that allows people never even charged with a sex offense to be placed on a public registry of sex offenders through a civil proceeding (to get around "beyond a reasonable doubt"). I've mentioned this before--if this can be done to sex offenders, why shouldn't it be applied to all offenders and offenses, and what are the implications of that? . . . Ponder, and enjoy the evening.

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