For your liberty!
FAQ: Definition of Crime
In general terms crime involves acts that infringe on the liberty and well being of other persons. To be more specific, crime** includes the following acts:**For this document, the term "crime" is used generically as is the term
"harm." Actually, some of the acts listed involve torts for which
victims seek remedy in the form of damages in civil court.
In technical (legal) terms, criminal acts (crime) can be broken down into two categories:
Perspective and Observations
Personal responsibility and accountability form the base for our freedom. Quite simply, for our system to work people who do not act responsibly (i.e., people who engage in activities that harm others) must not be allowed to infringe on other peoples’ liberty. People who commit crime must be held accountable; that is the primary purpose for our government.
Acts listed above are crimes, whether those acts are intentional or whether they occur due to negligence.
Libertarians believe that government does not have authority to establish a moral code.
Furthermore, behavior that does not include the list of criminal acts listed above and that involves consenting adults is not a crime.
Protecting Me from Myself
Genius may have its limitations, but stupidity is not thus handicapped.
Many laws prohibit acts or behavior because the person doing the prohibited act or behavior may be harmed.
Using that same rationale, surely it seems logical to criminalize insufficient exercise and high fat and/or "junk food" diets. These criminal acts are especially troublesome if "perpetrated" by parents on their children or by people with an existing medical condition such as diabetes or obesity.
Also consider persons who live in places with high levels of air pollution. They intentionally and with forthought cause harm to themselves and to their children; harm that is totally avoidable.
Perhaps "extreme" or "very dangerous" sports activities such as ice and rock climbing, dog sledding, surfing where sharks lurk, and even boxing and football should be prohibited because injury is likely and death is possible.
And how can we leave out tanning which is known to cause melanoma? What about body piercing and other types of "body enhancements" which often result in infection and disfigurement?
All too often criminalizing an act or behavior has the unintended consequence of creating a "black market."
There is probably no better example of black market effects than those associated with the prohibition of alcohol in the United States. Prohibition lead to the rise of organized crime, gangs, drive-by shootings and bloody turf wars; not to mention the significant erosion of personal freedom.
Another example of the black market effect is the resurgence of cigarette "bootlegging" and smuggling. This occurs because "sin taxes" artificially increase the potential profit for smugglers.
Drugs are perhaps the best example today: illegal drug "enterprises" can make huge profits because drugs are black market goods. These drug enterprises are enabled because drugs are illegal.
Of course such drug enterprises do actually engage in crime, often violent crime. However, most of that crime would not occur if the drug enterprise had no reason to exist (i.e., there was no excessive black market "profits").
Also, burglaries and robberies are committed, and violence is perpetrated, by drug users as a way to pay for artificially expensive black market products. Most of those crimes occur because drugs are illegal and as a result, they are very expensive.
So, approximately 80% of what is categorized as drug-related crime
The bottom line: at least 80% of "drug-related" crime occurs because of black market dynamics – a reflection of economics and human nature. It should be obvious, but economics and human nature cannot be legislated.
Longer Incarceration Periods, More Consistent