- Published: June 5, 2015
Recently, I came across an article (The Impact of Modern Neuroscience on Treatment of Parolees) on neuroscience’s advancement in our understanding of addiction and how this has created a greater possibility for treating drug offenders. The article begins by outlining the problem of our current criminal justice system. The authors’ believe that the current system of education and counseling is not as effective as it could be, especially since the cost of incarceration falls on taxpayers. Instead, they believe that neuroscientific advances in the understanding of addiction will help to better deal with behavioral problems in criminals through the potential use of the drug, naltrexone. However, they make note of the legal and ethical implications of treating addicted criminals and they do so by examining three different possible methods for facilitating the drug’s use: a “voluntary” approach, a “leveraged” approach, and a “no choice” approach.
1) Voluntary – treatment is not linked to the offender’s status in the justice system and the decision to take the drug is 100% voluntary
2) Leveraged – offender agrees to take the drug so that he/she may receive more favorable treatment in court
3) No Choice – offender has not choice in the court’s decision for him/her…