There are undoubtedly many people who are alive today because of James Q. Wilson, who died last week. He was not a doctor or medical scientist, nor was he a fireman or coast guardsman who rescued people from immediate dangers.
James Q. Wilson was a scholar who studied crime. He saved lives because his penetrating analyses of crime and the effect of the criminal law debunked the theories of other intellectuals, which had led judges and legislators to ease up on criminals — leading in turn to skyrocketing rates of crime, including murder.
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