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Juvenile Delinquency Essay

3502 words - 14 pages

On any given day you cannot open up a newspaper or turn on a televisionand not find an article or a broadcast about juveniles committing crimes, but thequestion is who is to be blamed for the juvenile delinquency of our Jamaican society?Juvenile delinquency is a violation of the law by a juvenile not punishable by deathor life imprisonment. The government follows a policy that no crime goesunpunished. The controversy that surrounds courtrooms today is whether or not ajuvenile should stand trial as an adult and be punished like an adult for committingserious offenses. One side believes that juveniles should be punished according to theseverity of the crime in which they committed. The opposition believes that juvenilesare too young and immature to understand the consequences of what he or she haddid wrong.There is no doubt that various experts can give us many theories as to the causes of juvenile delinquency, however, the researcher feels that one of the causes of juvenile delinquency is the breakdown of families, including lack of parental control over children. It is ironic in Jamaica today, one must have a driver's license to operate a vehicle and a permit to own a gun but one does not have to have training or a license in order to become a parent. Without specialized educational programmes in child development and parenting, many of our future parents will not have a chance at becoming successful parents and worse, yet, many parents today are already contributing to the ever increasing problem of juvenile delinquency simply by not knowing how to be parents. Being a parent is a lifelong commitment and new parents must learn parenting skills immediately; mistakes in parenting will have drastic effects on the child.There are many reasons for the widespread crisis in families today. Below are some of those causes:The authoritarian parent tends to emphasize rules and very harshconsequences. There is little room for discussion or negotiation.The indulgent parent tends to spoil the child and expects little or noresponsibility at home, choosing instead to clean up after the child bothat home and in his social misbehavior.The indifferent parent is so preoccupied with his/her own life andactivities that little time and energy is given to either involvement orappropriate structure.Studies have been made to determine the causes of juvenile delinquency. Many of these studies have focused on family relationships. In one study, comparing delinquent and non-delinquent youths showed that over ninety percent of the delinquents had unhappy home lives and felt discontented with their life circumstances. Only thirteen percent of the non-delinquent youths felt this way. This study also brought attention to the fact that to these youths, delinquency appeared to be a sort of solution to them. It brought attention to youths neglected by their parents, or approval of delinquent friends, or it solved problems of an unhappy home life in other ways.A study by the...

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