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LETTER: Yes, ‘hug a thug’ is the answer

re: Only Harper has been tough on crime (Letters, Feb. 21)
The writer equates being tough on crime with being tough on criminals. The numbers and my 36 years of experience in criminal (prison and forensic) psychiatry indicate otherwise, as does the American mass incarceration experiment which came close to bankrupting California and which other U.S. states (notably New York) are now moving away from.
The few people who do need to be confined need programs which are truly correctional, but most of this work needs to be done in open (and much cheaper) settings like parole and probation.
Hamilton Mountain MP Chris Charlton spoke against Harper’s last omnibus crime bill in these terms and I look forward to her critique of this latest one.
Yes, “hug a thug.”
They get too little of that where they are. And keep that “revolving door” revolving.
Guy Mersereau
Hamilton Mountain

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