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Is Castration Justified ?

Discussion in 'Serious' started by Corky42, 5 Jul 2014.

  1. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    Here is a nice meta-analysis of 80 studies, 22181 subjects: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18206060

    Note that re-offending dropped --by 37%. That means 63% went on to re-offend.

    I wonder if you would feel the same way if one of your loved ones was the one he did kill.

    Some risks constitute "never events"; we should strive for them to never happen. "Less likely" is not enough if you or your loved one drew the short straw.
     
  2. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    I don't think repeat offenders should ever be given the opportunity to reoffend. IMHO certain crimes* invalidate the perpetrators rights to live in our free society.

    They should either be:

    1. Locked up in a hard but safe fair prison system (Ultra basic food, Extremely hard work that benefits society and zero privileges. They're there to pay back society until the day they day. No respite, no easy ticket.)

    or

    2. Put to death using the cheapest and most humane way possible (Nitrogen gas fits the bill).

    The perp themselves gets to choose whether they go with 1. or 2.

    EG You shouldn't let child rapists out to rape again. Ever.

    There's something rotten at the core of our society when someone who inflicts a lifetime of pain and suffering on their victim is locked up for less time than many people own a pair of shoes and then allowed out to be free and move in to the same street as their victim.

    * The trouble is we all have different lists of which crimes deserve which punishment. Everything is also complicated by the burden of proof and some people seeming to accept less than others.

    If I got my way and this system was implemented then rapists etc would end up dead, but so would a few innocents who got caught up with the system.

    I don't know enough to know which system creates the more victims. Allowing repeat offenders to reoffend or killing a few incorrectly convicted innocents. I fear it may be the former (our current system) and that's a scary thought.
     
  3. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    Well, that depends what your objective is. Keep in mind that these are often pretty abused and damaged individuals themselves. They will not relate the punishment to their actions, because in their early childhood experience abuse was often random and without apparent provocation. For them it is just more abuse; even if you explain to them why you are doing it, they will not take it in.

    So if they are criminally insane rather than evil, you may as well treat them humanely.

    Too slow. You want it to be quick and painless.

    But, you know, thin end of the wedge. We can see in the US how well death penalties work.
     
    Last edited: 6 Jul 2014
  4. Big_malc

    Big_malc Well-Known Member

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    Hypoxic atmospheres are all pretty much the same makes no real difference if co2 or N
     
  5. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    Yeah, but it's too slow. You don't want the prep to have time to think about how he's dying. You want it over before he's got time to say: "Hey--"
     
  6. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    I'm reading/understanding this differently...
    Doesn't that mean that between the control group and those receiving the treatment there was a 37% difference? In other words only 11.1% of those treated went on to re-offend, versus 17.5 percent of the control group. Not the 63% that you say went on to re-offend. :confused:

    A reduction of 37% seems to be a fairly good result to me, either way doesn't it show that it's not all about power and dominance ?

    Well i kind of would, i could find some comfort in knowing that what he/she has done to my loved ones he hasn't done to 9 other families

    I kind of agree, but shouldn't everyone have a chance to change their ways and all that ?
     
    Last edited: 6 Jul 2014
  7. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    Yeah, my bad. :duh: There was a 37% reduction. But keeping in mind that psychological approaches get similar results, it's not fantastic. Of course combining the two may get you slightly better results, but not much IIRC --chemical castration is usually only offered in conjunction with psychotherapy.

    It shows that it may be modulated by sexuality (it is how it expresses itself). Take that out of the equation, and it may express itself in other ways. Note that figures are the same for violent and general recidivism. Of course perpetrators who are on a chemical castration scheme are closely followed up to ensure adherence; that alone may curb their behaviour. An important point here is that a significant part of the control group did not go on to re-offend either --quite probably because they were being closely watched.

    A close watch for life would be unavoidable. Interviews with some perpetrators in the US who volunteered for surgical castration admitted afterwards that they consented not to curb their dysfunctional impulses, but to get early release from prison. One quite happily continued to express his misogynist and violent hatred towards females. Another continued to experience sexual arousal when shown pictures of underage boys (his preferred fixation) and was caught with compromising pictures of children in his possession some time later.

    There is also evidence that when such offenders seek hormone replacement therapy to counteract the negative physical side-effects of castration, that their chances of recidivism shoot up again. Because this can occur decades after surgical castration, their parole has lapsed and there is no system to prevent them from seeking such medical help from a doctor who is unaware of their history (I know: "How did you lose your goolies?" "Testicular cancer, doc..." It happens).

    Basically, you are treating a symptom, not the cause. The inability to bond with adults and poor interpersonal skills resulting from a severely damaging attachment experience remains a source of stress and of expression of dysfunctional, and likely dangerous behaviour.

    That's very rational of you, but most people would be outraged at the idea of a convicted murderer being released in the knowledge that there is a 10% chance that he will kill again. In the legal system that would be an unacceptable risk.
     
    Last edited: 6 Jul 2014
  8. Guinevere

    Guinevere Mega Mom

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    Nah, it's quick enough. What is it? A bit of drowsiness followed by full unconsciousness in possibly under a minute? Brainstem death is guaranteed and will occur in <10mins. It's pretty nice as deaths go and a hell of a lot better than many natural deaths that occur. It's not being locked up in a basement and raped and beaten daily for fifteen years. It's not decades of emotional damage followed by throwing yourself under the 8.32 on the Northern line..

    That's as humane as I'd ever want to be for certain people TBH. I don't care if criminally insane is a valid justification to keep dangerous people around.

    Just ask Bruce how that works out down in Arkham.

    I'm so glad I don't get to decide who gets thrown in my inert gas asphyxiation chambers... and I'm even happier to know such things don't exist.

    Some people may damn well deserve to be shown the EXIT but that doesn't mean I'd support us having one.
     
  9. SuicideNeil

    SuicideNeil New Member

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    .50 cal hollow point to the head should be extremely quick and 100% effective, not to mention very low cost compared to current methods. Could easily setup a 'machine' that is essentially a chamber they insert their head into, then a button is pressed to fire the round- make it a bolt-gun type affair so that there is no danger of the round passing clean through etc.

    A suicide booth, kinda, only, not... :worried:
     
  10. Pliqu3011

    Pliqu3011 all flowers in time bend towards the sun

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    Not sure if joking or... but that's an absolutely horrifying idea IMO. I would not want to live in a country where this is ever brought into practice (or death penalty on the whole for that matter, but that's another discussion). Many seem to forget that these people, however horrible their crimes, are still people, human beings. Really nasty people without doubt, but you can't just pick someone and decide they're not human any more and shouldn't deserve humane treatment. Ironically enough, dehumanising others is the exact problem many of these psychopaths and rapists have.
    Just lock them up for life so they pose no danger for society (or themselves) any more, maybe provide some therapy if possible, there's no need to fire a bullet through their brains and essentially slaughter them like an animal. It doesn't solve anything, it doesn't benefit anyone*.

    (*and no, I do not consider the hollow gratification of revenge some will have afterwards a benefit)
     
    Last edited: 7 Jul 2014
  11. SuicideNeil

    SuicideNeil New Member

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    Call me callous, because I am, but I'm also a pragmatist; humans are like goods- the more there, the lower the value. Considering how many scumbags in the world, and how over populated the world is in certain areas, I figure reducing our numbers by means of eradicating the scumbags would be a great move. Not only do you reduce the number of scumbags, the remaining humans will have a higher value ( in every sense )..

    /Hitler
     
  12. koola

    koola Banned

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    Sounds like China :)

    The problem with the UK is that many people are more concerned for the perpetrators well-being/human rights that that of the victims to the extent whereby any meaningful punishment is devalued on the basis it would impact the offenders human rights.

    In regards to the OP, it's not the answer as pointed out by Nexxo as offenders are motivated by more than sexual desires. IMO such cases where it's deemed a neurological disorder and only after study should the offender be put to death following a period of time in allowing new evidence and appeals. Don't get me wrong, the death penalty is NOT the final solution. Understanding and treating these conditions is, but until that happens the only effective solution is the death penalty.
     
  13. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    AFAIK the control group received the same treatment as those who had undergone castration, i.e psychological treatment, follow ups, restrictions.

    Although i have to say the research does seem patchy, as the study you mentions says that 17.5% showed sexual recidivism, while the one i mentioned says it's 50%.

    And the same large disparity in the numbers is reported in those after castration, yours says it's 11.1%, mine claims it's 2% to 5% :confused:

    Yet that is what we do. We routinely release convicted murders, rapist, and pedophiles after they have served their sentence.

    WOW :eeek: I'm not sure how we have moved on from cutting someones danglies off to cutting off their head :worried:
    I only think castration could be justified in some cases, obviously after extensive work has already been done and only if the "doctors" think it is necessary, or would help the person.
     
    Last edited: 7 Jul 2014
  14. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    A meta-analysis looks at the results of all studies (in this case 80) lumped together, and tries to compensate for methodological differences along the way. Hence results will vary from those of individual studies. If we look at those studies separately, huge methodological problems arise in participant selection (if we go back to the 1930's, as several studies do, we find them including convicts castrated without having ever committed a sex crime --this was the age of eugenics, after all), recording of their offending history (what constitutes a sex crime, before and after the op), follow-up (some were released with minimal probation because they were now considered safe, so it's unclear what they got up to since), lack of matched control groups and whether this was a longitudinal study by neutral researchers or a post-hoc analysis of existing practice by the penal system justifying its practices. IIRC a Swiss study from 1976 was methodologically most sound and came up with similar figures as the meta-analysis: a 10% recidivism vs about 20% in the control group.

    Because the parole board considers them at very low risk of recidivism (yeah, I know, lots of problems with that too: it's always a gamble). But they would never release someone knowingly accepting a 10% risk. Legally and politically that would be unacceptable.

    Basically I think that:
    1. Evidence of effectiveness is too shaky to justify such an extreme practice, especially when psychotherapeutic techniques produce similar results. Of course it is a hard topic to research rigorously.
    2. Even a 37% reduction is not that great. But the perceived effectiveness of castration is 100% --which is why it keeps being raised as a possible solution-- thus creating a false sense of security.
    3. It treats a symptom, not the cause. Offenders may carry on with violent offending in other ways.
    4. It creates a distorted view of the pathology. This is not about some weirdo with a neurologically deviant brain causing deviant sexual urges; this is about children growing up in a horribly damaging and abusive environment in the context of a society that glorifies violence, is misogynist and sexually repressed.

    I am minded about how depression is treated with SSRI's which research demonstrates has only a 40% effectiveness, and does not actually do anything about the causes of depression, so the problem is likely to recur. Or how psychosis is treated with antipsychotics, which have only a 30% effectiveness and huge side-effects to boot (which can last forever --even after you stop taking the drug). In the latter case, yes, 30% seems better than nothing --but sometimes it makes things worse, and applied as a blanket approach that is not acknowledged and other contributing factors remain undressed.

    Supposed miracle cures for psychological conditions dehumanise --they take the human factors out of the equation. Here, just pop a pill, have an injection, let's just cut off your nads, it's all for your own good and you'll feel better. Only you don't? You must be mistaken. This is known to work...
     
    Last edited: 7 Jul 2014
  15. Corky42

    Corky42 Where's walle?

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    And that's the thing, we treat the mental unwell with chemicals so why not sex offenders ?
    I would suggest that someone who is mental unwell is less likely to cause harm to another human, whereas a serial sex offender is (based on my common sense, or lack thereof) more likely to again cause harm to others.
     
  16. Darkwisdom

    Darkwisdom Level 99 Retro Nerd

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    Why not bring back public beheading? It's as quick as a flash and it's entertaining XD

    I jest of course.
     
  17. Nexxo

    Nexxo Queue Jumper

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    We do, and in many cases we shouldn't. The drugs don't work that well. But we want to believe that they do, because they are cheaper and easier, so we keep prescribing them, and we keep ignoring all those messy human factors that are complicated to understand and unpleasant to work with, and we keep wondering why our mentally ill and substance-addicted population isn't getting any better. 25% of all GP referrals are now to mental health services (fun fact: how much of the NHS budget is spent on mental health services? 11%).

    So why repeat the same mistake with sex offenders?

    Psychologically speaking this is what we call "splitting off the bad object" taken to its extreme. By removing the testicles, or chemically removing the sexual urges, the perpetrator can disavow personal responsibility for his actions ("Hey, I didn't rape and murder that child, it was my nads, man! It was those uncontrollable urges!"). Drinkers blame the booze, drug addicts blame the drugs. If they're not blaming everybody and everything else... But nobody takes responsibility for their actions. And that is what we want, right? Why else punish them harshly with hard labour or dream of executions if they just can't help themselves?

    I suspect that this is also why some sex offenders ask to be castrated. They buy into the fantasy that out of pants, out of mind; the bad nads (sorry, did I just say that?) are gone, so is the guilt; don't blame me, guv, I'm innocent and pure as the driven snow. I paid my dues: a life for a ball. Except that psychologically, they're still just as messed up. The more manipulative (or desperate) offender will use it as a way to get out of jail free (as indeed one admitted to doing).

    The truth is somewhere in the middle. Sex offenders are the damaged product of a messed up childhood, and at the same time the only way to move beyond that is to learn to take responsibility for one's actions and the impact it makes on other people. Take ownership of those nads...

    Meanwhile society needs to take ownership of the fact that it does, occasionally, produce such disturbed people and that a civilised society deals with them in a wise and civilised manner. Understand first, judge second. And don't buy into the myth of easy answers.
     
    Last edited: 7 Jul 2014
  18. lysaer

    lysaer Suck my unit! Kirk lazarus (2008)

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    My girlfriend thinks so.......

    Sent from my SM-G900F using Tapatalk
     
  19. Lance

    Lance Ender of discussions.

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    I've not had a chance to read this yet but I feel that I should just leave this here.

    http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Alan_Turing

    Alan Turing was a hero and was prosecuted for homosexuality where be was chemically castrated eventually leading to suicide.

    What happens if we get the police report wrong?
     
  20. Porkins' Wingman

    Porkins' Wingman Can't touch this

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    Pop poll: what does everyone prefer the idea of - a tolerant society or an intolerant society?

    The US is comparatively less tolerant than the UK in terms of the approach to crime and punishment. I don't think the fact the US has a much higher violent crime and murder rate is a coincidence.
     

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