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Is branding a viable/reasonable alternative to jail?

–1 vote
A few years back I read a novel (I hate myself for forgetting the name...some dystopian steampunk western) in which the story's main town, instead of throwing them in jail, branded rapists, pedophiles, and murderers with their respective crime. After being branded on both cheeks, chest, back, and backs of hands, they were released outside of the town with the choice to continue living there at the risk of public humiliation and beatings, or to continue life elsewhere. Do you think this is a preferable alternative to jailtime? Is this a reasonable way to deal with such types in an anarchist society?
asked May 22, 2012 by Vindico Vaco (1,220 points)
Point of interest. If the rapist/whatever is a masochist this could backfire.

2 Answers

+3 votes
who would do the branding? who would decide who should be branded? you're still positing that there would the social functions of police and judge.

as far as i'm concerned, resolution to problematic behavior would be contextual and determined by the people who were impacted (and what counts as "impact" would probably be understood differently in different places and times). physical punishment would be one of the options open to the decision-makers.
answered May 22, 2012 by dot (52,130 points)
i become exhausted by this category of crime/cop/punishment question. :(
0 votes
sure, go for it!
answered May 23, 2012 by Broner (1,060 points)