This Note will examine commodity theory as a system for assigning punishment for sexual offenses in the context of the 2007 circuit split over defining “crime of violence” under § 2L1.2 of the Sentencing Guidelines. Part II will discuss the problem of punishing sex offenses and describe Donald Dripps' proposed commodity theory solution. Part III will discuss criticisms of using commodity theory as a basis for punishing sexual offenses. Part IV will provide background information on the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines generally and § 2L1.2 of the Guidelines specifically and explain why the circuit split serves as an ideal opportunity to analyze Dripps' theory through judicial debate. Part V will examine in detail the reasoning and decisions on both sides of the circuit split. Part VI will discuss the inadequacies of the Ninth and Fifth Circuits' decisions and highlight the shortcomings of Dripps' theory. Finally, Part VII will highlight the current changes to the Sentencing Guideline and address the need for changing perspectives on violations of the will.
Note, The Laboratory of Judicial Debate: Examining a Commodity Based Approach to Punishing Sex Offences, 57 Clev. St. L. Rev. 309 (2009)