Elona Kalaja
June Tangney “Condemn the Crime Not the Person”
What is Tangney’s thesis?
In her article Tangney argues that shaming and humiliation is not the best method of punishment for offenders who have commit nonviolent crimes and to make them reflect about their behavior or action. In many cases it makes these individuals behave aggressively. Community service is a method more effective which can develop constructive behaviors. Important is that offenders to understand they did something bad, but they are not bad people. Both these methods of punishment are cheaper than traditional ones.

Do you agree with her thesis? Explain.

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Tangney in her article talks about people who commit offenses and their punishments. I agree with her when she says that shaming and humiliation is not an effective way to punish these people because it does not make them to understand what was wrong in their behaver or action. It labels them as bad people. Another negative side of shaming will be derision. The community would remind all the time the offense that they commit. For example, if somebody steal an object at work, people would call him/her burglar. This label will follow the person for a long time. It makes these individuals feel angry, and they will behave aggressively. In brief, it will not help them to improve their behaver or to make them to do not repeat the crime, on the contrary, it affects their psychological side and makes them to do not judge with coolness. In some situation their behaver is worse that it was before. Tangney talks also about community service as an effective method of punishment. I do not agree with that because I think shaming and humiliation is the same thing as community service. People who commit offenses have to pay for their crime in public. Which means other people are going to judge in the same way in both cases. They can label and mock these individuals in the same way as they do in the case of shaming. So, I don’t think that one method works better than the other one. I agree with her when she says that both these methods are cheaper than traditional ones.