Arguments Against Rational Choice Theory

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Historical Background Rational choice theory really started developing during the eighteenth century. Before this, especially during the Middle Ages, a fear of satanic possession, or control from a higher power, really dominated thinking (Siegel, 2016). Those who were believed to be witches or possessed were burned at the stake, and their offspring was even considered to have inferior blood (Siegel, 2016). This thinking didn’t really start dying out until the Renaissance period, when new ideas about human nature were developed (Siegel, 2016). The base for rational choice theory really started developing when Thomas Hobbes, an influential philosopher, suggested the existence of a social contract (Siegel, 2016). A social contract was an agreement …show more content…
443). They even state that most of each sample failed to consider the consequences. This study’s intent was to “examine how well student-based samples can speak to the decision making process used by actual, real work offenders” (Bouffard, Exum, 2013, p. 445). They did this because of the general availability of university students, which makes them an enticing group to study. They concluded that the decision making process between students and inmates operates largely the same, at least in terms of lower-skill offenses. This helps prove that, studies about decision making for crimes can be done on college students, and not necessarily only on criminals. This whole study also helps prove that crime is a decision, and that even the criminals in prison still rationalize crime about the same way that college students do. I believe it’s important to note that the criminals made rational choices, even if it was just on a survey, and weighed the possible costs vs benefits, much like the rest of us …show more content…
While I believe that they are making the choice themselves, it is hard to prove. One could argue that, given the fact that they made the rational choice to take the drugs in the first place, they are therefore responsible for any actions they commit while under the influence. While it is definitely hard to prove that someone who is under the influence of illicit substances made a rational decision to commit whatever crime they committed, I still believe they are responsible, even if it’s just traced back to the fact that they made the choice to take the drugs in the first

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