Wednesday, June 22, 2005

Crime and prejudice

Nick Davies's continuing investigation into the failures of Britain's criminal justice system burns with white hot anger today (see here).

One of the starkest points in the article comes in relation to Tony Blair's speech of 19 July last year in which the Prime Minister jettisoned at a stroke all the good work that could have been done for the sake of populist approval.

In Davies's account, the Daily Mail and its ilk are truly the forces of darkness.

But what, I found myself wondering, would Melanie Philips and co themselves make of Davies's analysis?

On what grounds would they not accept what he sees as the cast iron logic of all criminological study that points to the benefits and the need of supporting offenders rather than punishing them in ways that lead to ever worse situations?

How would they construct their arguments? Would they even need to? Or is prejudice and vitriol enough?

No comments: