How many people wish they could be crime scene investigators? Or FBI agents? Or forensic lab techs? I have come to notice that one of the most popular, yet under explored, fields is forensic science (forensic psychology, forensic chemistry, forensic biology etc.). If the dynamics of working in the forensic world is so appealing, why are there not more people in pursuit of such careers? I think I may know the answer.
In American society, a celebrity driven culture, people are exposed all too often to the dramatization of real world events, be it through television, social media, or the like. Included in this dramatic saturation of day-to-day phenomena is the idea that forensics is the superstar job of the thrill-seeking individual. Unfortunately, it is this sort of media extravagance that keep people from the field because common sense dictates that they pursue a more practical and reassuring major. After all, we can always delve into forensic science when we get home from work and turn on the television. How many of us envy the characters on Law and Order or Criminal Minds? Or Psych and Dexter? How cool it must be to make a living solving puzzles, chasing bad guys, and saving lives...
Well, I am here to tell you that the television is not the end game to a person interested in helping the criminal justice system. A research study, known as the Depravity Standard, has been underway to get the public's input on what makes a crime particularly evil. It is a simple survey that takes roughly 20 minutes and asks you rate certain elements of depravity that YOU feel represent evil. For example, is taking pleasure in committing a crime worse than targeting a victim due to prejudice? Or vice versa? Is intending to traumatize someone just as bad as carrying out a crime to inspire terror in the community?
We need a fairer justice system, hands down. The Depravity Standard is the first endeavor to actually allow the people of United States to take part in criminal sentencing reform. Time to stop being an agent in your imagination and take the first step in real forensic work.
Take the survey here - FYI: the Depravity Standard will probably make you think about concepts you have never considered before. Best put on your thinking cap.