Madam Speaker, I agree 100% with my friend.
I would not suggest for a moment that sentencing is not a part of the criminal justice system. Let us take a look at the Criminal Code, there is lots of sentencing in there. We have lots of prisons.
My point is that sentencing is not the big solution. It is not the big magic bullet fix that is being urged upon us politically. I agree 100%, and I could not say more. Getting out in front and dealing with the causes of crime is part of it and sentencing is a part of it as well.
The member did make a reference to a sentence that is commensurate with the crime and the circumstances, and I agree with that fully. That is why we have courts and judges. We usually allow them that decision to deal with that whole constellation of sentencing factors because we could not possibly provide for it here. We could not possibly cover off every factual situation when we write out a sentence for a crime. We allow judges to deal with those.
We have the sentencing factors and criteria set out in the Criminal Code. That is one of the reasons why, for the most part, I object to the mandatory minimum because it is a dead-headed, blind imposition of a custodial sentence, when in fact in some cases it might not be appropriate. However, we do not know the appropriate case.