Bring Back Hanging!

A Texas man has been arrested for failing to return a library book. Others have been jailed although a 4 year old was allowed to pay a fine and avoid incarceration. This is America, after all. It seems excessive at first glance, at least to those of us that live in a country that doesn’t have more people in gaol than any other in the world and a larger percentage of the population imprisoned than any other. But think about it.

If you borrow a library book and don’t return it, surely you have formed the intention to ‘permanently deprive the owner thereof’? That’s larceny.

“A person takes and carries away, any thing,  the property of another, with the intent to permanently deprive the owner thereof.”

Even if at the time of the taking and carrying away the intent wasn’t formed, surely when the due date fell and he still didn’t take it back he had decided to keep the goods. Three years later given he still lives in the same town one could be forgiven f0r thinking he wasn’t going to return the book (and complete his contract with the library) unless he was given some serious motivation. A night in the County Jail did the trick.

So was it excessive? Books cost a lot of money and not returning them on time deprives others from being able to read them. Crime is crime, is it not? Where does one draw a line? Read the article linked here and let me know your thoughts.

 

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