Juvenile Crime

There is a battle over how to combat the nation's fastest-growing crime problem - juvenile offenders. There has always been alarm and despair over escalating juvenile crime While overall crime statistics in the largest cities have dropped, there is one category where it has skyrocketed. That category is crimes committed by youths under the age of 18.

The typical crimes youngsters commit are: acquaintance rape, harassing phone calls, burglary, cyber crimes, and racial hate. What causes juveniles to commit such crimes? Some theorize they are affected by problems such as poverty, family breakdowns, neglect, alcoholism and poor education. Upon identifying negative environmental factors, many regard delinquency as a normal adaptive way for the child to cope. An emotive theory is that the child’s personality unfolds in response to the people and events around him. A typical response might be that the delinquent behavior represents a neglected attempt of the child to compensate for attention that he did not receive.

Furthermore crimes are punished according to their seriousness, with higher penalties for more serious crimes. Punishment may include: A fine, Term of imprisonment, Probation or parole, Restitution (repayment) to victims, voluntary work. However our juvenile justice system as it was conceived many years ago does not address the problems of today's recidivist and violent juvenile offender and is in need of drastic overhaul. Moreover, young offenders are still considered incapable of responding to their own crimes.

In conclusion to sum up, society must be reviewed as a whole not just seeking the reasons why youngsters commit crimes. Some basic issues must be reinforced such as education, moral values, knowledge achievement, family structure and so on. Maybe if society sees itself as something beyond as consuming products, enjoying entertainment etc she be able to find some light in this dark tunnel which we all live today.

Autor: Leticia Nogueira Allem

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