Sentencing Laws

This coursework investigates the literature that is available on methods of sentencing and how they impact the judicial system of the United States. It establishes the advantages and disadvantages of determinate and indeterminate sentencing and how each affects the country as a whole. In addition, it establishes the just and fairness of the parole system and if its application should consider gender issues, especially with regards to child bearing. According to the literature available, determinate sentencing is the kind of imprisonment that has a defined length which is not alterable by any agency. On the other hand, indeterminate sentencing is subject to parole or any other legal phenomenon that can lead to termination of the jail sentence (Stephanos 9).

Determinate sentencing has the advantage of being free of corruption and manipulation by the socially privileged or persons in power. This is due to the fact that the decision to accord or deny one parole is subjective and is at the discretion of the parole agency. Thus, it could be possible for the socially privileged persons to manipulate the decisions of the agency to favor their personal interests. On the other hand, indeterminate sentencing has the disadvantage of non-uniformity in determining the punitive measures to be imposed on criminals (Stephanos 9).

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Indeterminate sentencing is sociologically superior as it puts into context the situations surrounding the commission of the offence. In addition, it gives the correctional facilities a human face in that a convict’s personal explanations can be understood and used as a basis for rewarding parole or probation. Ideally, indeterminate sentencing has helped the country to achieve fairness in its justice system. For instance, the fact that it takes into account one’s personal life and the situations surrounding his or her commission of the offence ensures that someone committing an offence for the first time is not treated equally to someone committing the same crime for the umpteenth time. In fact, it should be redesigned to enable women with young children to acquire parole much easily due to the fact that they need to be close to their families (William 32).

In conclusion, the determinate sentencing has for a long time been regarded as being fair and just considering it ensures uniformity of punishments. However, this should not be the case as people commit crimes in different social or mental conditions that should be considered in determining the punitive measures against them.

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