In Matthew C. Altman (ed.), Palgrave Handbook on the Philosophy of Punishment. Palgrave (forthcoming)
AbstractI argue that legal punishment is morally wrong because it’s too morally risky. I first briefly explain how my argument differs from similar ones in the philosophical literature on legal punishment. Then I explain why legal punishment is morally risky, argue that it’s too morally risky, and discuss objections. In a nutshell, my argument goes as follows. Legal punishment is wrong because we can never sufficiently reduce the risk of doing wrong when we legally punish people. We can never sufficiently reduce this risk because wrongful punishment is much worse than wrongful non-punishment and because punishment’s permissibility depends on the answers to a variety of difficult philosophical questions about which we’re fallible.
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Hard Luck: How Luck Undermines Free Will and Moral Responsibility.Neil Levy - 2011 - Oxford University Press UK.
The Ends of Harm: The Moral Foundations of Criminal Law.Victor Tadros - 2011 - Oxford University Press.
Free Will.Timothy O'Connor & Christopher Evan Franklin - 2018 - Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy.
The Impossibility of Moral Responsibility.Galen J. Strawson - 1994 - Philosophical Studies 75 (1-2):5-24.