Elizabeth,

I believe whole heartedly that adolescent who commit crimes should be tried as adults. If a adolescent was to murder another person than yes, your punishment is to spend the rest of your life in jail. Laws are created to protect us not to break it. If an adolescent is willing to sell drugs on the street than they should be fine going to jail for that crime. Their should not be a simple slap on the wrists or probation time, it should be jail. I know a lot of people would argue with me and say that they are just children. To me, than they should know better. A adolescent is old enough to know right from wrong. To know that committing a major crimes, destroys lives. There is a show on A&E called Scared Straight. I love this is show because it shows adolescents what happens when you do break a crime. They interview prison inmates and they tell the kids about their experience. I think more countries in different states should have this problem. I also think more states should not be afraid of being the hammer down on these adolescents either. No matter who they are, whether they are quarter back of the football team or the president of the school. Don’t do the crime if you can’t do the time.

Shannon,

Adolescents decision making can depend on their peers and their emotions(Blume & Zembar, 2007). I have always been on the fence on whether a kid should be tried as an adult. Do I think they should be held accountable for their actions? I absolutely do. But, I know first hand, that kids don’t always think things through.  Teens tend to act in the moment. That’s not to say that some haven’t premeditated their crimes. When the crime is premeditated, it means that person has had plenty of time to think about what their actions will be and the consequences to their actions. I believe that some kids have been tried as adults that could have benefited from some other course of action. This is why I am on the fence. How do we determine which ones acted on a single impulse and which ones should spend their lives in prison? We need to consider every reason for the crime that has been committed. Is a kid in a gang and selling drugs because this is all he or she knows? Did a kid kill the person that has been molesting or raping them their entire lives? Evaluations need to be made before considering trying a juvenile as an adult. Think back to your own teenage years. Did you always think about the consequences to your actions or did your emotions and peers lead you toward a decision?

Shannon

Blume & Zembar (2007). Middle childhood to Middle Adolescence Development from ages 8 to 18: Pearson Education, Upper Saddle River, NJ

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