[ExI] Implications of Sociopath Testing

Lee Corbin lcorbin at rawbw.com
Wed Aug 20 14:26:33 UTC 2008

Stathis writes

> Lee wrote:
>> In your sentencing, do you take into account the fact that he or she
>> is a sociopath?
> It depends on whether the judge believes the person's psychological
> state will make them more or less likely to offend again. If more
> likely he should go for a longer sentence, if less likely he should go
> for a shorter sentence, all else being equal.

Certainly, but this is also exactly how it is at the present time. I'm
wondering if having exact knowledge---just for the purpose here
of establishing principle---that a criminal about to be sentenced is
actually a sociopath (e.g. has no conscience and is completely
incapable of remorse or sympathy with other living things), makes
a difference to you.

In my view, it would make an extreme difference. Since we
now know that this individual means only harm to others, then
he must be placed in monitored community with only other
known sociopaths, or executed forthwith.

> The alternative approach of granting a sociopath a lesser sentence
> on the grounds that he couldn't help his behaviour is spurious.

Of course. That's as silly as excusing a criminal's behavior because
of his genes and his environment. To understand or comprehend
is one thing, to excuse is quite another.


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