In Molly Gardner & Michael Weber (eds.), The Ethics of Policing and Imprisonment. pp. 7-37 (2018)

Steven Swartzer
Fordham University
In the United States, convicted offenders frequently lose the right to vote, at least temporarily. Drawing on the common observation that citizens of color lose democratic rights at disproportionately high rates, this chapter argues that this punishment is problematic in non-ideal societies because of the way in which it diminishes the political power of marginalized groups and threatens to reproduce patterns of domination and subordination, when they occur. This chapter then uses the case of penal disenfranchisement to illustrate how idealized discussions of deterrence, rehabilitation, and retribution often ignore the relationship between punishment and social/political power, and thus systematically obscure morally significant aspects of our broader penal practices.
Keywords Non-Ideal Theory  Penal Disenfranchisement  Racial Injustice  Criminal Justice  felon disenfranchisement
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References found in this work BETA

Freedom and Resentment.Peter Strawson - 1962 - Proceedings of the British Academy 48:187-211.
The Theory of Moral Sentiments.Adam Smith - 1759 - Dover Publications.
Utilitarianism: For and Against.J. J. C. Smart & Bernard Williams - 1973 - Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

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