Chenier - The Criminal Sexual Psychopath in Canada.docx

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University College Courses
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Scott Rayter

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- After World War II, sex crimes against children emerged as a major social problem (171) - Perceiving a dangerous and out of control threat against children after several kidnappings and murders, people looked to the government for a response (171) - In the years after World War II, sex offenders were viewed as mentally disturbed instead of criminally responsible (172) - Sexual psychopath laws were seen as the solution because of the idea that repeat sex offenders couldn’t be deterred by incarceration because their crimes stemmed from uncontrollable sexual impulses (172) - So these laws allowed the state to keep sexual psychopaths in jail until they were deemed “cured” by a psychiatrist (172) - Only a handful of American states had adopted such laws before the war, but by 1953, 24 states and Canada had such laws (172) - The first decade of the Cold War was marked by increased regulation and rigidity of sex and gender norms and the construction of the sexual deviant, who was a threat to personal and political security and stability (172) - This legislation represents the apex of the marriage of psychiatry and law and the shift from punishing offenders to reforming them (172) - It was part of a tradition of moral reform that appealed to the baby boomers’ parents because of its emphasis on bad parenting (172) - Throughout the nineteenth century, psychiatrists said there were some people who weren’t insane but were compelled to commit crimes as a result of mental problems beyond their control (173) - Turn of the century moral reformers embraced the idea of criminal behavior as a medical (and thus treatable) problem (173) - By the early twentieth century, psychopathy came to define those whose inability to conduct themselves with decency or propriety in life but who were not otherwise mentally or intellectually impaired (173) - Sexual immorality began to be associated with psychopathy in the early twentieth century (173) - As early as 1905, psychiatric testimony described male homosexuality as a disease of the mind (173) - Women whose sexual activities violated social and moral standards were also considered psychopathic (173) - By the 1930s, the sex psychopath was defined as a dangerous male sex pervert whose uncontrollable urges led him to commit violent crimes and would continue to commit violent crimes until his mental problems were resolved (173) - The crimes covered by sexual psychopath laws that imposed indefinite prison s
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