A columnist for the Boston Globe, Jeff Jacoby, in his article, “Bring Back Flogging” published on the op-ed page on February 20, addresses the issue of the deficiency of today’s criminal justice system and attempts to persuade us to bring back flogging as a punishment for certain crime. However, though his syllogism might arouse the reader and educate them on the need for reform, but it fails to convince the reader that corporal punishment is the best option.
He supports his argument by providing some good amount of evidences; however, he seems to go with some week witnesses. The first reason he points out that about 1.6 million Americans were in jail that year (1997) which represented “a 250 percent increase in 1980, and the number is climbing” (par 3). Obviously, at this argument he wants to demonstrate the weakness of the federal justice system when using imprisonment for “almost every offense in the criminal code” (par 3). However, his assumption is quite vague in his first argument. We cannot literally say that the increase in the number of prisoners means the increase of crime. Besides that, he cannot assume that capturing more and more criminals and putting them in jail is a bad thing. Secondly, Jacoby also attempts to use statistics to support this opinion. By saying the common estimate cost of one inmate is approximately $30,000 per year, he implies that the U.S federal justice system have spent too much money on inmates, and that the whole imprisonment system is