Proactive Vs. Reactive Laws

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Proactive vs. Reactive Laws

Proactive vs. Reactive Laws


The aim of all law enforcement agencies and institutions is to reduce the rate of crime in the country so that people can have a safer environment to live in. For this purpose, the government along with the judicial system makes laws for the protection of its citizens. These laws are then enforced by the law enforcers like police and other legal departments. However, the major concern is to prevent crime i.e. stop it from happening. For this, law enforcers need to be able to predicting the actions and reactions of prospective and existing criminals. So, that law enforcers can formulate strategies to prevent crime and bring down the rate of societal damage (Clifford & Edwards, 2011).

Lawmaking and law enforcement institutions are often faced with the problem of deterrence failure because of the loopholes in the law. In order to tackle this problem, a combination of both proactive and reactive criminal laws should be used in criminal cases. The law making institutions do their job by formulating laws, however, to enforce these laws for the protection of the citizens is the job of the law enforcement agencies. When the law enforcers fail in their purpose, a legal regime suffers from deterrence failure.

By default, the courts have designed reactive laws, whereby law enforcers take action only after they have a case brought before them. However, there is a huge gap between the crime prevention strategies and reactive laws. There exists a great demand for proactive laws and proactive enforcers i.e. law agents who can put into effect such laws and prevent crimes before they take place. The ability of law regulators and law enforcers to proactively enforce laws help in the mitigation of deterrence failure. Reactive laws often result in regulatory failures. Thus, there is an increased need of proactive laws (Walsh &Hemmens, 2010).


Criminal Investigation

For a criminal justice system to be effective and just, crime investigation and crime prevention strategies should engender public confidence, while encouraging respect for law and order maintenance. Essentially, the process of crime investigation tries to bring the perpetrators to justice for a crime or intended crime. These investigations can in essence be reactive, i.e. for crimes already committed or proactive, i.e. for criminal intentions and for hindering a future criminal activity (Tong, et al., 2009).

Proactive Protection

Those law enforcers that do not have training for crime prevention and lack a clear understanding of proactive methods only wait to react to a criminal attack. The proactive laws help the law enforcers focus their energies on stopping the crime from happening at all.

Proactive law refers to a legal approach where the aim is to prevent a crime from being committed through acquainting the prospective suspects with the legal implications of their actions and by keeping an eye on their activity. Proactive laws are usually put into effect via criminal surveillance. Proactive laws are those where proactivity implies the use of legal instruments and is motivated by legal ...
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