Causes and Effects of Juvenile Crime

I feel that one of the biggest problems that the United States is faced with in the present day is juvenile crime. Juvenile crime does not only affect the individuals who commit the crime, it also affects the victim of the crime. This also affects the juvenile in their adult lives as the crime can be on their record as long as they live. Experts still have not found the main reason why juvenile’s commit crimes. However, they have come up with a number of reasons of why juvenile’s commit crimes, which I will be discussing in this paper..
The largest, and most common risk factor is the demise of the family life and the increase in family violence. Many say that how you are raised will make you the person that you are as you grow up. So, doesn’t it make sense to say that if you are raised poorly, you would be more prone to run into problems such as crime as you grow up? Between the 1970’s and early 1990’s, the number of juveniles living in poverty has grown largely for a number of reasons. This factor alone has caused a noticeable increase in crimes by juveniles. Many of these juvenile criminals also said to have been abused or neglected. For the majority, they also grew up in a single-parent household. Research has found that the majority of these children are more likely to be arrested, and are much more likely to commit a violent crime as an adult, than their counterparts who did not suffer such abuse. The reasoning for this is that psychologists have determined that the symptoms of child abuse are “high levels of aggression and antisocial behavior”. Another factor that has greatly attributed to juvenile crime is something that the children have no control over. This is improper parental care. Mothers who drink alcohol, take drugs, smoke cigarettes, and do other such things while they are pregnant are putting their children at high risk for problems. These drugs keep the babies from getting the nutrients they need, which in turn causes disorders in the babies. This problem is not as large now as it was twenty or thirty years ago when there was not as much known about these potential problems, but it still is a major concern when linked to the effects of using these chemicals while pregnant. The use of the products I mentioned has been linked to delinquency as the babies grow up with learning disorders. Certain parts of the juvenile’s brain won’t fully develop. This could impair their ability to know things such as the difference between right and wrong, good and bad, and so on. This is a problem which leads them to be juvenile criminals.
Also, drug use among the juveniles themselves leads to higher crime. Alcohol use is widely known to cause certain people to become violent and change their personalities, which leads to crimes. Drug use can cause the same effects, but also violence can occur as the juvenile needs to support their habit with money.
One factor that hasn’t been recognized up until the past five or ten years as a reason
for juvenile crime is media violence. In America, the average child will witness over 200,000 acts of violence on television, including 16,000 murders before the age of 18

( It is pretty convincing that heavy exposure to televised violence is one of the causes of aggressive behavior, crime and violence in our society today. I remember reading a story a few years ago in a newspaper that involved a stabbing because of a movie. In a Philadelphia movie theater, when the movie Scream 2 first came out, a teenager stabbed another teenager while watching it. That movie was based on a serial killer who would stab his victims to death. That is pretty convincing evidence that media causes violence among people. Another example involves a shooting of a police officer in Texas about seven years ago. When asked in court why the teen shot the officer he replied something like “Tupac’s music made me want to kill somebody”. Tupac Shakur was a rap artist whose music frequently involved profanity and killing. Television violence affects youngsters of all ages, of both