Juvenile Justice And Juvenile Delinquency Essay

1038 Words 5 Pages
Juvenile Justice & Juvenile Delinquency

Has the Juvenile Court Been Sufficiently Criminalized?

Over the past two centuries this country has made progress in the right direction when it comes to juveniles and their sanctions for delinquent acts. The majority of people in the United States would agree that having separate juvenile courts for minors is sufficiently affective, but what are the boundaries for these courts. After the landmark case of In Re Gualt, juvenile courts changed dramatically. The juvenile courts still have issues of claiming to be in the best interest of the child but frequently hand out punitive punishments solely based on the crime and the record of the individual rather than pushing towards a more educational or rehabilitative view. Minors should not have to ruin their chances in life because of decisions they made before adulthood. Juvenile courts are certainly criminalized and their decisions are frequently beyond what is considered to be reasonable. Juveniles should be treated differently than adults and should not experience the same criminal court. In recent history the juvenile courts have morphed from “a normally rehabilitative social welfare agency into a scaled-down second class criminal court for young people” (Feld, 1997, p. 68). This transition does not appear to be effective and if the two are so similar it seems irrational to keep the juvenile court when the same things happen in the adult court. Punishing minors for crimes in…

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