What should happen to those who commit crime? Should the punishment fit the crime such as a life for a life, or a hand for stealing? What about prisons? Should objectivists feel any reason to pay for prisoner's upkeep, prison maintenance, etc.? What is the regard for human life?
There are four potential purposes behind a criminal management system.
My own preference would be to develop a criminal management system that would restrict the freedoms of criminals to that degree enabling them to function without committing crimes. This would be graduated. For example, a person driving drunk would lose driving privileges (i.e., license). If that person again drive inebriated, they would be restricted to some form of "sheltered" facility. They could continue to work and do some activities. If the person then goes on to drive inebriated again, they would probably be placed in a prison and have little freedom indeed. If our society decides that a person must be incarcerated in order assure the safety of other citizens, then we are obligated to provide food, shelter, and health care for that person for the duration of the incarceration.
I see no reason for the criminal management system to be involved in management of victimless "crimes" such as personal use of mind altering substances (alcohol, marijuana, etc) in a manner that does not endanger other citizens, having two or more spouses, having a spouse of the same sex, etc
answered Jan 28 '11 at 20:20