Puritanism And The Reemergence Of Shame Penalties
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Canada Goose Coats On Sale “But Hester Prynne, with a mind of native courage and activity, and for so long a period not merely estranged, but outlawed, from society, had habituated herself to such latitude of speculation as was altogether foreign to the clergyman. She had wandered, without rule or guidance, in canada goose factory outlet a moral wilderness… The scarlet letter was her passport into regions where other women dared not tread. Shame, Despair, Solitude! These had been her teachers, stern and wild canada goose outlet online uk ones, and they had made her strong, but taught her much amiss. Canada Goose Coats On Sale
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne remains central to the American canon, and is required reading in high schools and colleges student across the nation. [FN 3] The Scarlet Letter is a snapshot of early American Puritan discomfiture with the issues of love and sex outside the context of marriage. [FN 4] The protagonist, Hester Prynn, has committed adultery and is forced to wear a scarlet “A” as a constant reminder to her, and a caution to others, of her crime and sinful nature. [FN 5] While Hester’s is a fictional account, the punishment is historically genuine. [FN 6]
Modern readers view this penalty as a historical curiosity and no longer fear the possibility of public shame as punishment. canada goose outlet uk [FN 7] However, not only does this institution continue today, canada goose outlet reviews but computers, televisions, and telephones have made it possible for the local community to examine one’s “sexual moral wrongs.” [FN 8] Shame as punishment exists not only in strict, conservative Judeo Christian communities, but even many liberal jurisdictions have adopted these tactics, making the New Scarlet Letter more pervasive than ever before. [FN 9]
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Hester Prynn’s Scarlet letter was considered a lenient punishment for adultery. canada goose outlet sale [FN 11] Harsher penalties included being “tarred and feathered” (literally, hot tar painted on the body with feathers sprinkled https://www.canadagoosejacketonlines.ca over the tar to replicate the appearance of a chicken[FN 12]), being “pilloried” (a pillory is a “wooden framework with holes through which an offender’s head and hands are placed” [FN 13]), or installed in the “stocks” (a device “made of two wood timbers attached together, locking the legs or arms of the criminal”[FN 14]). In that era, compulsory public confessions and apologies were not uncommon sanctions [FN 15] with the nature of the crimes posted above the offender. Some offenders were whipped in public. [FN 16] Such punishments harken back to the Biblical era, when Jesus of Nazareth was publicly humiliated before his execution by a public flogging and posting of a sarcastic sign on his cross proclaiming him “The King of the Jews” to notify passers by of the canada goose outlet uk sale nature of his crime against society. [FN 17] Such canada goose black friday sale public punishments have always invited people to mock and torment criminals publicly displayed, and the people often did so with great relish. [FN 18]
These punishments are now considered “cruel and unusual,” and it would be considered shocking to the American public if they discovered that any of these punishments had returned. goose outlet canada [FN 19] But one indeed has technologically refined to maximize the shame.
Jurisdictions across the United States retain laws founded upon traditional moral arguments criminalizing specific sexual acts. [FN 20] These laws include fines and imprisonment for prostitution, [FN 21] sex between consenting high school age people, [FN 22] sex with multiple partners, [FN 23] sex outside of marriage, [FN 24] sadomasochistic sex, [FN 25] use of devices, sex in adult theaters[FN 26] and sex shops [FN 27], and other non traditional sexual encounters. [FN 28] Only recently has the Supreme Court of the United States recognized a right to privacy in the bedroom for non procreative sexual behavior. [FN 29]
Many of these criminalized and ridiculed behaviors are allowed, but veiled for secrecey. Pornography shops, [FN 30] “escort services”, [FN 31 ] adult toy stores, [ FN 32 ] pornographic theaters, [ FN 33 ] and websites are canada goose outlet new york city the scenes of many of these veiled behavoirs. [ FN 34 ] The public countenances these outlets where they believe canada goose outlet adult private citizens should be allowed to view or employ these materials, and where creation or enforcement of bans would be difficult or impossible to enforce. [ FN 35 ]
However, legislators are creating new laws and law enforcement has found new ways to enforce them by using an old tactic public shame. [ FN 36 ] Shaming generally consists of exposing the offender to some degree of public canada goose outlet black friday humiliation and scorn.[FN 37 ]
canada goose coats With epidemic prison overcrowding, and probation costs rising, humiliation as punishment has become a cheaper alternative, and many believe it more effective. [ FN 38 ] canada goose coats
canada goose store American cities have begun employing technology to place a “Scarlet Letter” on canada goose outlet in usa those accused of committing, attempting to commit, or soliciting one of these banned sexual acts. [ FN 39 ] These ideas are generally not being promoted by law enforcement. A member of the Chicago Police Vice Squad stated, “We didn’t even get a letter, fax, or official canada goose outlet call, we found out about this program by watching the news.” [ FN 40 ] Chicago’s program is a website featuring randomly selected photographs of individuals accused of soliciting prostitutes. [ FN 41 ] canada goose store
Canada Goose Jackets Kansas City [ FN 42 ], Oklahoma City [ FN 43 ], Denver [ FN 44 ], and several other cities have created television programs that run on publicly funded television channels showing the photographs, names, and home addresses of those arrested for sex offenses. [ FN 45 ] A small town in Texas supplies its male prisoners with embarrassing pink uniforms. A Florida legislator proposed a law to compel any woman inclined to place her child for adoption to publish a notice of all people she has had sex with in the newspaper of her residential jurisdiction, and newspapers of the residential jurisdictions of all her named partners. [ FN 46 ] And finally, a national cable news outlet, MSNBC, has achieved huge ratings success by luring “johns” to a home, ostensibly to meet a young girl or boy for sex, only to be greeted by a camera, probing questions, and culminating in a final, televised, arrest. [ FN 47 ] Canada Goose Jackets
cheap Canada Goose These cities and other jurisdictions hardly dispute that humiliation is their goal as a crime fighting tactic. Chicago’s Mayor Daley said to canada goose outlet store the Chicago Tribune that this is indeed their policy. “Your mug shot, name and address could be posted for the entire world to see if you solicit a prostitute in Chicago and get caught. You could find yourself posted on the Chicago Police Department Web site.” [ FN 48 ] Publicly embarrassing “johns” is the city’s latest strategy in fighting prostitution. With over 180,000 hits a day on their website, the public is looking. [ FN 49 ] cheap Canada Goose
The layman’s constitutional view is that what he likes is constitutional, and that which he doesn’t like is unconstitutional.
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Virtually all shame penalties focus on sexual acts. [ FN 51 ] A few are used on petty thievery and as creative punishments for repeat offenders, but most center around lewd public acts[ FN 51 ], prostitution[ FN 52 ], and child molestation. [ FN 53 ] Puzzlingly, the promoters of shame canada goose outlet store uk penalties tend canada goose outlet canada not to promote them for violent criminals, though such crimes by definition cause greater public harm. [ FN 54 ] Ultimately, one must understand the Puritanical origins behind shaming penalties to strike them down for their inequity.
Shaming penalties appear to violate several amendments to the constitution. By applying a shame penalty before the accused may seek counsel or is adjudicated guilty, the punishment appears to violate the Due Process clause of both the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments to the Constitution. Substantive Due Process rights may also be impugned. Further, because shame penalties are uncommon, [ FN 55 ] they may violate the “cruel and unusual punishment” clause within the 8th Amendment to the Constitution.
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The origins of sex focused public shaming laws.
Canada Goose sale The American government continues to be uncomfortable with sex. [ FN 57 ] Congress empanelled a special committee over Janet Jackson’s famous Superbowl “wardrobe malfunction.” [ FN 58 ] In the midst of a “War on Terror” against shifting, shadowy enemies, the occupation of two foreign countries, and other significant foreign and domestic issues,[ FN 59 ] Congress expended more effort on shielding its citizens from unanticipated blurry nipples than they spent debating the most recent six military conflicts. [ FN 60 ] Canada Goose sale
canada goose uk black friday Likewise, during the Vietnam era, in the midst canada goose outlet of major debates on abortion and the powers of the presidency, some Supreme Court justices sat down in front of a large projection screen with popcorn popped by their clerks and canada goose outlet parka watched pornography to determine if the movies were too “obscene” for American adult movie consumers. [ FN 61 ] The Court found “no right to homosexual sodomy” in the 1980s, only to overturn that decision three years ago. [ FN 62 ] Elsewhere in the industrialized world, gay marriage existed and Americans could view sodomy on the internet at any time. [ FN 63 ] It has been said that “In America sex is a fascination, for the rest of the world, it is a fact.” [ FN 64 ] The Scarlet Letter demonstrates how this contempt for sex outside of marriage derives from a Puritanical view of Christianity. canada goose uk black friday
“I feel that nothing so casts down the manly mind from its height as the fondling of women and those bodily contacts which belong to the married state.”
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Canada Goose Online Shame punishments were promoted by canada goose outlet online one of the founders of modern Christianity: St. Augustine of Hippo. As there are several sects of Christianity, each has its own canada goose outlet shop specific beliefs derived from its teachers, doctors canada goose outlet nyc and ideologues. [ FN 68 ] St. Augustine, on his journey into Christianity, believed he was impure due to sexual acts he had engaged in with men and women in bath houses and the sexual desires that plagued his mind for the rest of his canada goose outlet jackets life as a bishop. [ FN 69 ] In his famous compilation of letters, Confessions, he mentioned the single thing that kept him from being close to God was his sexual desires. canada goose outlet toronto factory [ FN 70 ] Canada Goose Online
uk canada goose These teachings greatly informed Puritanism and in turn, Puritanism greatly impacted the evolution of law in America. [ FN 71 ] The Puritans viewed adultery and fornication among the most egregious offenses by imbuing the belief that those who committed such crimes must be exposed in order to be cleansed of their sins. [ FN 72 ] uk canada goose.