Friday, March 02, 2007

Around the Blogs, Friday, March 2, 2007

  • Via Sentencing Law and Policy, we find this SSRN article on how market forces on local news programming drives hyped-up and deceitful coverage of crime in communities, which leads to the excessive punitiveness that we see in so many cases. This isn't really news to most of us who read this blog, but it's good to see someone hammer those local whor . . . newsreaders. The best book on this, now dated, is still Katherine Beckett's Making Crime Pay, which showed clearly that public opinion follows media coverage and political opportunism and doesn't drive either the coverage or the politicians. Once you read the article, go to Amazon and get Beckett's book.
  • Blackprof Blog has a nice post up on Tocqueville's depictions of our prisons in the mid-19th century and how they frankly really haven't changed in function and purpose that much since.
  • Crime & Federalism fairly blasts the caseloads that many public defenders find themselves with every day and questions the justice in those cases. I know, bleeding heart, those criminals get off easy, yada, yada. But read the stats they provide and ask yourself what exactly "sentencing reform" means in a system where a PD may defend 250-300 cases a year.
  • Prevention Works delivers a post that doesn't look corr sent at first, focusing on youth service, but get to the end and read the impact: "The NCPC’s Teens, Crime, and the Community (TCC) initiative promotes service-learning through the Community Works program. Community Works is a two-volume curriculum that educates youth about crime and victimization prevention and it helps youth engage in a variety of critical thinking and problem-solving activities in order to apply them to real-life situations. TCC is currently promoting service-learning by awarding competitive grants of up to $500 to all interested parties (and Community Works sites) that can support a service-learning project that is planned and implemented by youth who identify needs and create projects to address or prevent crime, violence, and drug abuse in their schools and communities for National & Global Youth Service Day." What better cause, huh?

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