The position that punishment should be proportional to how serious the offense is but that repeat offenders should re...

Selin on August 16 at 05:14PM

a vs. d

Why is A wrong?

1 Reply

Shunhe on August 17 at 04:58PM

Hi @schicago,

Thanks for the question! So let’s walk through this argument first. We’re told that it’s unsustainable to think that punishment should be proportional to how serious an offense is, and also think that repeat offenders should get harsher sentences. Why? Because that would make you think that super remote considerations are relevant. And if those are relevant, then so are a bunch of other ones. But then it’d be super hard to determine the seriousness of an offense, which would make it impossible to apply the proportionality principle.
?So now we’re asked for the role of the statement that “considerations as remote as what an offender did years ago are relevant to the serious of an offense.” Well, how is this being used? It seems like the argument’s basically as follows

P: If you believe proportionality principle and also repeat offenders should get harsher sentences, that implies super remote considerations.
P: If super remote considerations are considered, almost all considerations should be.
P: But then it’s impossible to apply proportionality.
C: You can’t believe both proportionality and harsher sentences for repeat offenders.
?So what sums this up best? (A) tells us that this is a statement that the argument provides grounds to accept and from which the overall conclusion is inferred. This is basically describing a sub conclusion or intermediary conclusion. But then it has to have another premise that backs it up. But that first premise is just asserted, no other premise supports it. And so that’s what makes (A) wrong.

Hope this helps! Feel free to ask any other questions that you might have.