It is interesting because the threshold for criminalisation is always difficult to determine. Before as now, criminal law remains a symbol and because of that symbolic value, it tends to be used as a benchmark or signal, whereas its effectiveness can be doubted.

Chill Out On The Texting While Walking Bans, Says Professor” (December 15th, 2008)

Read also in the same line the work on Overcriminalisation: the limits of criminal law, from D. Husak.

On the other hand, it could be argued that resorting to criminal law cannot be measured simply by effectiveness and that its symbolic results can be more important than its actual use by prosecution and courts.

About Audrey Guinchard

Senior Lecturer @ University of Essex (UK)
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