Mr. Speaker, on May 16, 1994 someone said: "An effective criminal justice system, one that holds people accountable for harmful conduct, simply cannot be sustained under conditions where there are boundless excuses for violent behaviour and no moral authority for the state to punish. If people know that they are not going to be held accountable because of myriad excuses, how will our society be able to influence behaviour and provide incentives to follow the law? How can we teach future generations right from wrong if the idea of criminal responsibility is riddled with exceptions and our governing institutions and courts lack the moral self-confidence? A society that does not hold someone accountable for harmful behaviour can be viewed as condoning-or even worse, endorsing-such conduct".
These words were not spoken by a Reformer but by U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas.
Would the Minister of Justice please take note.