Most people would accept the fact that are vast, significant, and major differences between modern society and societies of the past. Over time, humans have continually shaped and reshaped their lives, their surroundings, and their societies to reflect new attitudes, changing beliefs, and pressing needs. As a result, human society continuously is in flux.
Of the many elements of human society, however, some things have remained constant. The need to provide food, water, and shelter, for example, are common throughout time. So is the desire to be social. Another one of the elements of society that has existed throughout time is crime. From the very beginnings of society thousands of years ago, people have had to deal with crime and criminals.
From the time of large civilizations of the ancient Chinese, Aztecs, and Greeks, to the tribal communities of North America, Australia, and Africa, all communities have had ways to deal with crime. In the past, before large-scale, established societies came into existence, humans would use violence to deal with criminals. After communities began to be established, more codified ways of dealing with crime were put in place, but violence was still used. For example, to deter crime and criminals, some societies would kill thieves. Others would put them in prison. Another step that some communities in Africa have used in the past was to outcast criminals. Anyone who stole from anyone else would have to leave the tribe, group, or community. In some Native American communities of North America, societies would try to reconcile thieves and the people from whom they stole.
As time progressed and societies changed, crime was always something that people had to be concerned about. In general, punishments for crime likely stayed constant. Prison, death, ostracism, and even fines remained the norm for dealing with people who committed crimes. In Europe, though, around the 17th century, the Enlightenment began to change how crime would be dealt with. The punishments would remain the same, but they would become more codified. As many European nations began to make written law a part of their societies, people who committed crimes were seen not just as bad members of society but as people who had broken the law. As a result, criminals were not seen just as bad members of society but as people who had broken the law.
This trend of codification continued to the present-day. As a result, people who commit crimes today have to deal with laws, courts, and lawyers.
Laws today can be very confusing and complex. For more information on laws and crimes, contact the Milwaukee criminal defense attorneys of Kohler & Hart. They can be reached at 414-271-9595 or they can be sent a message from here.
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