I Would Do Anything for Law (and That’s a Problem): Criminalization, Value, and Motives

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Abstrakt

It is widely accepted that (1) criminalization creates a prudential reason to refrain from the criminalized conduct in order to avoid punishment, and (2) prudence is the wrong reason to refrain from wrongdoing. According to Michael S. Moore, these facts should lead us to conclude that the criminalization of wrongful conduct corrupts motives by making some who would otherwise have refrained from wrongdoing for the right reason, refrain from wrongdoing only out of prudence. This paper argues that (1) and (2) provide no reason to believe that criminalization corrupts motives, but should instead lead us to conclude that the criminalization of wrongful conduct obscures motives by making it harder to identify those who refrain from wrongdoing for the right reason. The paper then goes on to argue that the badness of obscuring motives is a pro tanto reason against criminalizing wrongdoing.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
TidsskriftCriminal Law and Philosophy
Vol/bind14
Udgave nummer2
Sider (fra-til)169-188
Antal sider20
ISSN1871-9791
DOI
StatusUdgivet - jul. 2020

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