501 Laws: Property Crimes
Law # 302: Property Crimes
Property originates from the philosophical concept of ownership that humans practice and ascribe to animal behaviors. “The right to acquire property is a natural right.” John Locke. Property crimes are breaches of ownership. Property crimes are related to the evolutionary instinct for predation, an inclination common among humans and animals. Egg predation on land and in the seas is a standard animal behavior that imperils the extinction of some species. Stealing property is a widespread human crime. Entire nations thrive on stolen lands. Larceny-theft, burglary, shoplifting, vandalism, and arson are major property crimes. Crimes against property may occur without violence against the victim, though force is needed to destroy property. Arson, graffiti, smashing windows, and slashing tires are violent property crimes. Deception, too, is an instrument of property crimes. Non-violent property crimes, such as embezzlement, money laundering, insider trading, bribery, and fraud, are white-collar crimes. The retribution fear deters property crimes, but not completely. “Any person who steals the property of a temple shall be put to death.” Hammurabi Code. “Anyone who steals must make restitution, but if they cannot, oblige them into slavery.” Exodus. “Cut off the hands of thieves.” Quran. Theft committed out of necessity is a mitigating factor in charitable systems. The wealthy abhors political dissent through the destruction of property. Property crimes release emotions against injustice and oppression. Liberty spreads from wrecking the Bastille.