Society has a responsibility to create and enforce laws that prohibit self destructive behavior and promote a decent moral environment.

Essay by oscardream February 2004

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Necessity of Social Control in terms of Self-Destructive Conduct

According to sociologists, self-destructive conduct is a type of deviant behavior and in many countries such behaviors are banned and defined as crimes. 3.5 million people every year in America are on parole or probation for such conduct (McCaghy, 318). These behaviors are treated as consensual or 'victimless' crimes because the person who participates in such misconduct does not apparently violate somebody else's rights. However, this is not to say that there is no victim and thus there is no risk for such self-destructive conduct to become a potential danger for society. Although banning 'free' people's actions which are not physically harmful for other people is still controversial, society has a responsibility to prohibit behavior that the majority of its citizens consider immoral, even if this behavior might be categorized as 'victimless'. In other words, socially immoral activities should be prevented because such behaviors contain potentially bad consequences for society.

Crime is usually thought of as affecting a certain victim, but since for consensual crimes such as drug use there is not a specific victim, they are seen as 'free choices' by some people. However, they should not be considered as a simple choice of a free man in a free society. It is known that freedom allows people to do everything unless they harm somebody else, but in consensual crimes-if you look hard enough- there are also indirectly affected victims beside the person himself. The only difference between these victims and real crime victims is that consensual crime forms its victims in a slow process, so they are not on the top of the water and you cannot easily see them. People who commit consensual crimes increase the potential of social disorder in society and at the end in one...