Every criminal defendant can point to some deficiency in intelligence, personality, or moral training which contributed to (caused?) his crime. Most can point to a history of poverty, poor education, and broken homes. Many have been beaten by family members, abused drugs, or suffered psychological abuse.
Should these problems excuse criminal conduct?
Why do we allow an insanity defense, and not allow a defense of "persistent poverty" or "chronic stupidity"?
from my criminal law textbook