Explain why individual rights and public order perspectives are such contentious issues in contemporary American Society
Individual rights are such a contentious issue in contemporary American Society because some laws cannot be interpreted in the same ways for all the cases. Individual rights have been outlined by the Founders and written in the Bill of Rights. The Founders believed that an individual has a right for freedom of speech, religion, press, as well as the freedom for unreasonable searches. Besides, an individual has social, political and economic freedoms. Nowadays, there are many cases, in which the individual rights have been violated (for example the cases of unreasonable searches and seizures). However, the trial did not take into account the violation of the individual rights.
On the other hand, there is such a term as the public order perspectives. Public order perspectives are involved almost in every case, when there is an individual rights issue. Public order perspectives concern the issue from the point of view of social danger. As it has been already mentioned above, individual rights mean the rights that every individual of the country has. On the other hand, from the public order perspective point of view, not all individual rights mean that the society will be protected. Individual rights protect a person whereas the public order protects everyone. As an example, there are some cases. The case United States of America vs. Beck is one of the cases, when police officers conducted a search without a warrant. In this case, there was no danger for the society, hence, individual rights were violated. On the other hand, there is a case United States of America vs. Jesse Campbell.
Briefly discuss how the main components of the criminal justice system can at times complement each other and at times also be in conflict with each other. Provide examples
Criminal justice system of the United States of America is divided into three main components: federal, state and military. In turn, federal and state components of the criminal justice system of the United States of America is divided into juvenile and adult. It always happen that the components of the criminal justice system conflict with each other. On the one hand, they should help each other in solving some significant issues. For example, the state component of the criminal justice system is to help the federal component of the criminal justice system in the cases of appeals to the Supreme Court. On the other hand, they are constantly in conflict with each other. One of the main reasons is the misunderstanding. Law is objective, but the executives of the law are subjective. Sometimes, feelings are what interferes the representatives of the state of federal component of the criminal justice system execute the law. Another reasons is the rapid change of laws. Local, state and federal laws are changing every day. Sometimes, it is rather difficult to keep up with everything.
One of such examples is the case United States of America vs. Booker. The state court sentenced Mr. Booker to be imprisoned. However, the accused has argued this issue in the Supreme Court of the United States of America (the federal court). The federal court agreed that the state court violated the sixth Amendment to the Constitution of the United States of America and released Mr. Booker.
Of the various stages of the American criminal justice case, which singular stage, in your opinion, is most critical from the crime control perspective, and which stage from the due process perspective? Explain why.
There are several steps of the criminal justice case:
- Initial hearing;
- Plea bargaining;
- Preliminary hearing;
- Pre trial;
There is no doubt that all the steps are significant. However, in my opinion, the first step, investigation, is the most significant stage due the process perspective. The point is that investigation is the process that allows police officers find the one who has conducted the crime. If the investigation is conducted in the wrong way, an innocent person may be accused and sentenced. There are many cases, when a person was false convicted. Hence, police officers should do everything they can to find a real criminal. The investigation is significant from other perspectives. It is no matter, what verdict a person hears. The main idea is that the person who has committed a crime heard the verdict standing in front of a judge or a Grand Jury.
When speaking about the crime control process, is the plea bargaining. When a person commits a crime, he or she does not think about going to jail. One hopes not to go there at all. When a person is offered a bargain, he or she is glad to agree. Next time, this person will think twice before committing a crime. One should always remember that what is forgiven once, will not be forgiven the second time. Hence, I conclude that plea bargaining is one of the most critical stages from the crime control perspective.
Identify and discuss the differences between the two major sources of statistical data about crime in the United States
There are two major sources of statistical data about crime in the United States of America. The first source is the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Uniform Crime Reports and the Bureau of Justice Statistics’ national Crime Victimization Survey.
One of the main differences is that the NCVS includes both reported and not reported to the law enforcement establishments. On the other hand, the survey does not include the data about homicide, crimes against children under the age of twelve, white collar crimes and arson. On the other hand, the UCR includes only the crimes about which the law enforcement establishments were reported. Besides, the UCR reports do not include the information about simple assaults.
The crime rates is another difference between two sources of the statistical data about crime in the country. The UCR rates the crimes per capita, whereas the NCVS rates the crimes per household.
However, I should admit that there is one major difference between the UCR and the NCVS. The measures in the reports of the UCR and the NCVS differ. Obviously, there are some cases, when errors may occur. For example, police officers may classify the crime incorrectly in their reports. Besides, victims of crimes may incorrectly recall about the crimes. However, I should mention that both the UCR and the NCVS do everything possible to omit the errors and present the most accurate data.
Of the many special categories of crime, which singular special category crime do you think poses the most critical concern in contemporary American Society? Explain why.
The five categories of crime are:
- Felonies (serious crimes, such as murder, rape, robbery, aggravated assault);
- Misdemeanors (minor crimes, such as peety theft, breaking and entering, disturbing peace, etc.);
- Offences (minor violations of the law that are less serious that misdemeanor, such as jaywalking);
- Treasons and espionage;
- Inchoate offences (preparing or seeking to commit another crime, such as conspiracy).
In my opinion, all the crimes pose the critical concern in contemporary American Society. Here, I would like to outline the treasons and espionage. In my opinion, nowadays, espionage and treasons crimes are the crimes to be solved urgently. The Edward Snowden scandal is the bright example of such a case. Mr. Snowden betrayed his homeland and leaked the significant data. I have chosen espionage and treasons because these are the crimes to be stopped by the government. The state and local governments have special programs of controlling and reducing the amount of other crimes (felonies, misdemeanors, offences and inchoate offences). I suggest that the main concern of the federal government is how to stop allowing others to leak secret information and put contemporary American Society under danger. Every leaked file may become dangerous in hands of terrorists; they may use it to disturb the peaceful living of ordinary Americans. Hence, I conclude that espionage and treasons are the most critical crimes.
Bill of Rights. Retrieved from http://billofrightsinstitute.org/resources/educator-resources/americapedia/americapedia-constitution/individual-rights/