Crime, Justice, Law, and Politics

Crime, Justice, Law and Politics
Thomas E. Crider
University of Phoenix

      There are common public misperceptions about crime.   For example, members of the public often think that murder occurs frequently, but statistics show that it is the index crime that is least likely to occur.  This paper will discuss the implications of forming crime control policies by legislative bodies that might be influenced by such inaccurate opinions. 
    Media is one of the biggest sources that cause the misperception of the public and lead to the public forming inaccurate opinions.   This in turn allows politicians to create crime control policies targeting these misperceptions, but doing nothing   in the long run except putting them in favor of the public.   The example of murder is a good choice because it represents one of our most heinous of crimes.   Because the media covers only the big crimes such as this, it gives the public the impression that murder is almost common place, while in fact it is not (David L. Altheide, 2006).   
    There were in 2002, 11,877,218 crimes committed in which the police were aware of.   Property crimes made up 88 percent, theft made up   59 percent, burglary   18 percent, violent crimes   12 percent, vehicle theft   10.5 percent, aggravated assault   7.5 percent, robbery   3.5 percent, rape   .8 percent, and murder was a whopping   .1 percent.   When the media covers violent crimes they intend to incite the public for nothing more than ratings.   The content of these broadcasts tend to sway societies views and politicians use these as campaign platforms to get themselves elected into office.   Politicians have also used the media to promote fear to justify the actions they take to combat crime (Schmalleger, 2007).
    You may have noticed that many of the most recent policies that have been passed only have an impact on the lower and middle class people.   The main reason for this is that it is the upper class who are influencing the laws in their...