Juvenile Justice System

1402 Words6 Pages
The idea of trying juvenile offenders as an adult has been a prevalent controversial issue for many years stemming to the creation of the Juvenile Justice System. Many believe that when a juvenile, defined by Pennsylvania to be under the age of 18, commits a heinous crime they should be tried as an adult and face harsher sentencing conditions. This notion disregards the nature of the actor and only puts emphasis on the nature of the act. The Juvenile justice system was created in 1899 determine the difference between youth and adults in the criminal justice system (Juvenile Justice, PBS). It was deemed the states duty to protect but also intervene and serve as a guardian if need be. As opposed to the adversarial adult criminal system, where…show more content…
Children and adolescents are less blameworthy. The concept of adolescence as a transitional phase of development between childhood and adulthood gives merit to ones inability to reason, know the difference between right or wrong, or weigh the volume of consequences. Juveniles do not possess the capacity to control one’s actions and make sound judgments, but also haven’t had the opportunity to mature. As adolescents grow, they have an opportunity to reflect on their experiences, and, potentially, to break away from their environments (Ash, P.…show more content…
Their experience with the outside world is limited to that of a teenager; some never learned to drive a car, had their own bank account, or held a job. In order to succeed ex-offenders need assistance addressing basic needs like housing and employment, education about life skills and coping with the daily decisions adults face in the outside world. Young people who have been in prison since they were adolescents need assistance with learning basic life skills. Many state and federal prisons no longer have an educational or vocational component to them. When criminalizing juveniles one needs to also reflect on the dignity and worth of a person. If juveniles are allowed to remain in the Juvenile Justice System they are afforded the opportunity to change and grow accordingly, where as if they are imprisoned in state and federal prison they are forced to adapt according to their environment, basically skipping adolescence and jumping into

More about Juvenile Justice System

Open Document