“Locking more men, women and children up for longer cannot be considered a serious, measured response to protecting and reassuring the public”,  says a press release from The Howard League for Penal Reform, whose members, having made some efforts to persuade themselves that putting criminals in prison does not protect or reassure the public, are determined to persuade the public itself that this is so.
.....Naturally our reformers are optimists, and are of the opinion that there is no man, however despicable or base in character, who cannot be corrected by the freedom to do good, or, failing that, by bribes; and, insofar as they understand their ideas to be fallible, they feel that, where criminals do not deserve the sanction of prison, the public deserves the risk.
.....I think Chamfort said it best: “Instead of trying to correct the intolerable way some people behave, we’d do better to correct the weakness of character of the people who let them get away with it.” 
 The Howard League for Penal Reform, “Home Office’s half-baked plans will create more victims of crime” (Press Release), 20th July 2006.
 Nicolas-Sébastien Roch de Chamfort, Reflections on Life, Love and Society, tr. & ed. by D. Parmée (London: Short Books, 2003), §47, p.51.