Punishment as Fair Play
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- Dagger, R. Res Publica (2008) 14: 259. doi:10.1007/s11158-008-9071-1
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This article defends the fair-play theory of legal punishment against three objections. The first, the irrelevance objection, is the long-standing complaint that fair play fails to capture what it is about crimes that makes criminals deserving of punishment; the others are the recently raised false-equivalence and lacks-integration objections. In response, I sketch an account of fair-play theory that is grounded in a conception of the political order as a meta-cooperative practice—a conception that falls somewhere between contractual and communitarian conceptions—and draw on this account to show how the theory can overcome the objections.