G Larry Mays and Richard Ruddell, Do the Crime, Do the Time: Juvenile Criminals and Adult Justice in the American Court System

Publication Date01 December 2013
AuthorBarry Krisberg
Date01 December 2013
SubjectBook reviews
bipartisan support they garnered for the Antiterr orism and Effective Death Penalty
Act. This 1996 statute fundamentally unde rmined habeas corpus and laid the
groundwork for the Patriot Act. (In fact, unintentionally, Killing McVeigh provides
good reasons to reexamine the Oklahoma City bombing as it evidently helped
clear many of the legal hurdles toward arming the securitized state in its ‘war
against terror’.) Madeira never offers commentary on the consequences of the vic-
tims’ activism or the ramifications of compelling prosecutors to call 38 victim wit-
nesses to offer impact statements during McVeigh’s trial. The potent political clout
the Victims’ Rights Movement summoned to alter criminal law begs for further
Perhaps most importantly, even though Killing McVeigh chronicles some of the
major legal decisions that constituted the empowerment of crime victims, readers of
this book will not understand the larger cultural and political context in which
these changes took place. Madeira occludes how the support of victims of crime she
documents was tied to a new hierarchy of victims and victimization that elevated
the plight of those subjected to criminal violation, while disavowing claims of
injustice and forms of suffering not codified in our criminal statutes. She is rightly
concerned with the pressure on victims to achieve closure, to ‘get over it’, but she
neglects to consider fully how a pervasive anti-victim discourse, targeting minori-
ties in particular, led to such investments in quick trials, easy solutions, and the
proliferation and entrenchment of a myth of closure as finality. After all, substan-
tively addressing victimization would require more fundamental change.
Puar J (2007) Terrorist Assemblages: Homonationalism in Queer Times. Durham, NC:
Duke University Press Durham, 78.
Alyson Cole
Political Science Department & Women’s Studies Certificate Program, Queens College &
The Graduate Center, City University of New York, USA
G Larry Mays and Richard Ruddell, Do the Crime, Do the Time: Juvenile Criminals and Adult Justice in
the American Court System, Praeger: Santa Barbara, CA, 2012; 242 pp. (including index):
9780313392429, $45.60 (cloth)
This important book comes at a crucial time in the history of the US Justice
System. In two landmark decisions, the United States Supreme Court declared
that the death penalty for persons who committed their crimes before age 18 was
a violation of the Constitutional prohibition of cruel and unusual punishment
(Roper v Simmons) and that sentencing young people who had not committed
murder to prison for Life without the Possibility of Parole (LWOP) was likewise
cruel and unusual (Graham v Florida).
In Roper, Justice Kennedy wrote the decision for a Court divided five to four
along sharp ideological lines; in Graham, Justice Kennedy articulated the six to
558 Punishment & Society 15(5)

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