Retributive Justice

Posted by Bruce Kahl on April 01, 2003

In Reply to: Retributive Justice posted by AA on April 01, 2003

: Anybody heard of retributive justice? Does it mean that it is only just/fair to give people their deserved punishment? Please help! Thanks.

Retributive Justice
Misbehavior is defined as an act against authorities.
Misconduct is a violation of a law; an abstract system of rules
The offender is accountable to the authorities for the misbehavior.
As a result, the authority figures and the offender are in an adversarial relationship
Accountability is equated with suffering.
If an offender is made to suffer enough (i.e. expulsion or suspension) they have then been accountable
Victims are peripheral to the process of responding to and resolving the misbehavior.

Offenders are defined only by their deficits(the misbehavior) and the victim is defined only by material and psychological losses.

Misbehavior is entirely the result of individual choice with individual responsibility.

Restorative Justice

Misbehavior is defined as an act against victims and the community. Misconduct is an injury which violates people and community trust

The offender is accountable to the victim and the community. Authorities help insure that the offender is held accountable to the victim and community, and the process is fair and equitable.

Accountability is defined as taking responsibility for behaviors and repairing the harm resulting from those behaviors. The outcomes of the system are measured by how much reparation was achieved..

Victims and community are directly involved and play a key role in response to misbehavior.

Offenders are defined by their capacity to take responsibility for their actions and change behavior. Victims are defined by losses and capacity to participate in the process of recovering losses and healing

Misbehavior has both individual and social dimensions. Misbehavior is defined by individual choice in a context of conditions which lead to criminal behavior.