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Unpublished Paper
The Case of Weak Will and Wayward Desire.
Rutgers Law School (Newark) Faculty Papers
  • Vera Bergelson, Rutgers (Newark) School of Law
Comments
Criminal Law and Philosophy (2008) (forthcoming)
Abstract

In this article, I confront Garvey¡¯s argument that a weak-willed individual deserves partial excuse for trying to resist a strong desire that pushes him toward commission of a criminal act even though in the end he unreasonably abandons his resistance and commits the crime.

I attempt to refute Garvey¡¯s argument on two counts: one, I question whether the law should indeed provide mitigation to such an offender; and two, I argue that, even if it should, this mitigation may not come in the form of a partial defense. Defenses, even partial, are desert based, and there is nothing in Garvey¡¯s offender¡¯s circumstances that makes him less blameworthy for the crime he committed. A court may choose to treat such an offender more leniently but it should not be mandated to do so.

Date of this Version
9-24-2008
Citation Information
Vera Bergelson. "The Case of Weak Will and Wayward Desire." (2008)
Available at: http://works.bepress.com/vera_bergelson/7/