Routine Activity Theory

618 Words3 Pages
Although many may not realize it, people are constantly establishing theories to explain daily occurrences. In other words, individuals take into consideration independent factors, and use them to explain how two or more events are related. In addition to daily occurrences, theories are often used to attempt to explain why there is crime. For example, Marcus Felson and Lawrence Cohen developed the routine activity theory that proposes crime as a result of a motivated offender and the opportunity to break the law. Theories like such routinely influence policy and are crucial to today’s research on crime. Theories matter for a variety of reasons. To begin with, theories provide insight to some of the most pondered and complex events such as…show more content…
This is because reducing crime is one of today’s most pressing issues due to the fact that the United States has the largest number of incarcerated people in the world. So, possible solutions to lowering crime are always needed. In Criminological Theory: Context and Consequences, it stated, “In any case, the important point is that support for criminal justice policies will collapse if the theory on which they are based no longer makes sense” (Lilly, Cullen, & Ball, 2015). I feel that theories are a prerequisite to accomplishing any legislation with the goal of reducing crime. Without a strong theory that makes logical sense, policies are likely to fail. Now, enacted policies based on certain theories could come with consequences. Civil liberties for a group of people could be neglected with the passing of certain legislation. For example, early in the 20th century, many Americans wanted, “…to sterilize offenders so that they could not pass criminogenic genes on to their offspring…” (Lilly, Cullen, and Ball, 2015). Sterilizing offenders would not only intrude on civil liberties, but also ignore the eighth constitutional amendment that states no cruel and unusual punishment. When proposing criminal justice policies, one must first make sure that it does not come with horrific
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