• VAGUE COMPARISONS AND PROPORTIONAL SENTENCING

    Author(s):
    Jacob Bronsther
    Date:
    2019
    Group(s):
    MSU Law Faculty Repository
    Item Type:
    Article
    Permanent URL:
    https://doi.org/10.17613/7y3q-ty46
    Abstract:
    The "small improvement problem" ("the Problem") applies when no option in a comparison is best nor, it seems, are the options equal, because a small improvement to one would fail to make it the better choice. I argue that vagueness causes the Problem, such that the options are vaguely equal or vaguely "related." I then unpack an important instance of the Problem, the comparison between a crime and a punishment upon which the ideal of a retributively deserved sentence is based. I argue that this comparison is not only vague, but remarkably vague, leading to an expansive array of "not undeserved" sentences. I conclude, however, that retributivism can only justify the least harmful "not undeserved" sentence.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Journal article    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    4 weeks ago
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