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Refereed articles

Irreconcilable differences? Building a human rights culture and dealing with crime in post-apartheid South Africa

Many people, Piers Pigou argues, have very limited awareness of human rights. While many agree that crime is a symptom of social inequality, a number of myths have arisen û for example, that the Constitution contributes to crime because it protects criminals or that capital punishment will reduce crime.

Many people, Piers Pigou argues, have very limited awareness of human rights. While many agree that crime is a symptom of social inequality, a number of myths have arisen û for example, that the Constitution contributes to crime because it protects criminals or that capital punishment will reduce crime. Politicians have contributed to a climate hostile to human rights by feeding some of these myths. Public confidence in the police is very low and vigilante action is on the increase. But even though strict adherence to the regulatory and rights framework may be difficult, the author argues, it is designed to provide protection against abuse, not to make policing more difficult.

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