Suppose you are exiting the grocery store one day and realize that the cashier forgot to charge you for a
Suppose you are exiting the grocery store one day and realize that the cashier forgot to charge you for an item in your cart. For a moment, you consider going back into the store to pay for the item, but you remember that the line was very long and the only cashier on duty was downright hostile. You decide to keep the item without paying for it, even though you strongly believe that stealing is wrong. After further thought, you realize that keeping the item is okay because it is not very expensive and the store will probably not miss it. Besides, the store probably owes you a lot more than what the item costs anyway because they regularly overcharge for other products. In addition, the store managers made the mistake of only scheduling one cashier to work on a weekend and the cashier was rushing, which is probably why she did not see the item in the cart. Therefore, the store managers and the cashier are really at fault for this situation.
The above scenario illustrates how distorted thinking and reasoning processes can justify poor behavior. While this scenario is minor in comparison to serious crimes, such as armed robbery, murder, and sexual assault, the same cognitive concepts and theories apply.
In this Discussion, you apply cognitive concepts and theories of criminal behavior to explain why seemingly “good” people commit crimes. You also reflect on whether you could commit a crime yourself under the right circumstances.
By Day 3
Post a response that addresses the following:
- According to cognitive theories, why do seemingly “good” people commit crimes?
- Are you immune from committing a crime? Would you—or could you—commit a crime if you were able to reasonably support doing so?
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