I've noticed that a lot of the questions on SO recently are students blatantly asking for the community to do their homework for them. I'm not talking about legitimate questions like "I've been working on this for hours and am stuck on this part" or "I don't understand what this is asking; can you clarify?", but rather questions like "This is my homework question. Please answer it for me." I've also seen a few questions that look interesting, only to find that they are live questions from a programming contest. I even once saw someone recently ask for help with a question that was part of an online job interview.
I have absolutely no respect for this behavior. It is completely dishonest both to others who are taking the assignment/test/contest seriously and to the members of SO. It also shows, in my opinion, a serious lack of integrity on the part of the person asking the question.
Right now, the options on SO are to close the question or downvote it. These options seem far too lenient for something like this. If you were in academia and asked someone else to do your work for you, you would be disgraced and would likely never be able to do research again. If you were in industry and copied someone else's source code, you could be liable for millions of dollars for IP theft or copyright infringement.
Is there some way that we can increase the severity of the penalty for blatant cheating make it clearer that asking the community to do your work for you is entirely inappropriate? I am tired of reading over these posts when trying to help real people with real problems who have made an honest effort to get unstuck.