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Prison is reserved for cases which are so serious that only immediate custody will suffice.

This is obviously disgusting. But nobody was hurt. Nothing was damaged. The “victim” is the public’s sensibilities. The harm is purely offence. And the judge accepted there was no intent.
Is it really the case that recklessly causing offence is so serious that no other penalty, other than a life-defining sentence of imprisonment, is appropriate for a man with no previous convictions? I know some will think Yes, and I understand why. But I struggle with this.
Outraging public decency is itself an unsatisfactorily broad offence. The Law Commission has published proposals to reform it (ignored by the government), observing “it is not a tool for the enforcement of morals”. That, I have to say, looks to me what has happened here.
This isn’t a tubthumping rant (for once). I’m not sure what the right answer is. Maybe a short sharp shock, the clichéd clink of the prison door closing, is the only appropriate way of dealing with this case. But it doesn’t feel right. Not when we see how many chances others get.
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