Publication information
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Source: Medical Bulletin
Source type: journal
Document type: editorial
Document title: “Is Crime Infectious?”
Author(s): anonymous
Date of publication: September 1907
Volume number: 29
Issue number: 9
Pagination: 349-50

“Is Crime Infectious?” Medical Bulletin Sept. 1907 v29n9: pp. 349-50.
full text
Isaac K. Funk; crime (dealing with).
Named persons
Leon Czolgosz; Isaac K. Funk.


Is Crime Infectious?

     THE well-known psychologist, Dr. Funk, of New York City, was reported in the Philadelphia Ledger to have said that crime was as infectious as small-pox, and that “unless immediate radical steps are taken to put a stop to the epidemic of crime that is raging in this city (New York) the whole country will become infected with the desire for murder, and an epoch of bloodshed will follow.”
     Dr. Funk rightly recommends quick trials and justice of the severest type. He attributes the cause and increase of so much crime to the yellow press and to the influx of immigrants from several European countries noted for their hot-headed people.
     The infectiousness of crime is not due to a germ that permeates the atmosphere and requires a suitable culture medium for its development, but it is the result of the [349][350] “unwritten law,” the plea of “brainstorm” insanity, that in a measure give license to the would-be criminals to commit a criminal act, hoping that they will be acquitted on the grounds of their insane condition.
     When we study closely and read between the lines the expert opinions given in criminal cases, we are sometimes forced to believe that money governs the opinions rendered, and that the expert suffers from a mental disease known to some as “money paranoia.” Is he sane? What is the difference between the expert and the criminal? Isn’t it too bad that our noble profession should have such weaklings in its ranks who force themselves on the public as experts, and congratulate themselves that they are so ethically able to bamboozle their professional brothers.
     The thing we need to subdue crime is quicker and severer punishment—the kind that Czolgosz received for murdering our worthy President.



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