Chapter Summaries

        A common expression is “you can’t legislate morality,” which means if people are generally predisposed to behave in a morally repulsive manner, no law enacted by a legislative body will instill in people an inner moral compass. Crimes against the public are defined in relation to the religious moralism that has formed the backbone of American law since the country’s infancy and on the moral precepts that one should not steal, lie, or otherwise take advantage of a public trust. Moral crimes are typically mala prohibita, behavior made criminal by statute for which there is little criminal sanction, few are arrested and punished, distinct from mala in se crimes, inherently evil acts such as rape, murder, or incest. The chapter discusses gambling (pp. 163–164), prostitution and human trafficking (pp. 164–165), drug and alcohol offenses with the U.S. v. Ulbricht (2017) case excerpt (pp. 165–170) that details the justification for a life sentence for Ross Ulbricht, who sold millions of dollars of drugs on the Dark Web. Also covered are drug and alcohol offenses including driving while impaired (pp. 168–170); firearm offenses, rights and regulations (p. 170); breaches of the peace including gang conduct (pp. 171–172); obstruction of justice crimes (pp. 173–175); environmental crimes (pp. 175–176); and the many varieties of computer crimes (pp. 176–180). Crimes against national security and legal responses are discussed (pp. 180–182) with a demographic profile of those charged in the United States with terrorism-related crimes, with the case excerpt of U.S. v. Bell (2015), where the court has to weigh the defendant’s acts justifying a 30-year sentence with his expression of remorse (pp. 180–188). Making the Courtroom Connection focuses on the challenges facing correctional officers managing those convicted of terrorism charges (p. 188). The chapter ends with a cursory treatment of treason and sedition (pp. 188–189).