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Juvenile crime

Team B: Affirmative Brief

Juvenile crime is increasing rapidly and is a problem that plagues America.

The murder rate by 18 year olds has increased 467% since 1965! The current policy

maintained for the last number of decades is clearly not effective. An increase of

207% in the number of murder cases committed by 15 year olds from 1985 to 1993

is not a sign that current policy is effective. Changes must be made. The best way

to address the problem is through government funded preventative programs. The

affirmative intends to prove, and stands resolved, that the federal government should

establish a program to substantially reduce juvenile crime.

This, by definition, means that the federal government would benefit the

country by taking action and making government programs that will decrease the

number of crimes committed by minors. Contention I: The status quo is only

harming the people of the united states by remaining. Subpoint A: It has become

clear that the state and local governments have failed in correcting the nation wide

epidemic of juvenile crime, since juvenile crime rates are rising so rapidly.

Subpoint 1:An example of an ineffective state plan is that many states are

attempting to incarcerate juveniles along with adults. Putting juvenile offenders in

with adults increases their chances offending again when they are released by 65%.

Subpoint 2: SHOCAP, a local crime reduction plan, was shut down because it was

ineffective. Subpoint B: Local plans are too diverse and lack uniformity. Subpoint

1: A plan that can lift up the entire country are far superior to those that can only

effect small parts.. Iowa may indeed have smaller problems than New York but

Juvenile crime exists everywhere. Subpoint 2:In the hands of the federal

government, a more effective, tax worthy and moral shaping plan can be spread

throughout the entire united states and benefit the country as a whole. Utilizing this

information from the faults and few successes of the states, will help correctly fund

and perfect an active plan which will indeed begin to substantially reduce juvenile

crime, before it happens...through the methods of prevention.

The plan that we the affirmative propose is one that institutes a combination

of different preventative programs which the federal government will entirely set up,

fund, and work with these community efforts.

Plank I: This preventative program will be funded through the organization of

juvenile justice and delinquency prevention program, a federal agency which

consists of 17 separate groups involved in delinquency prevention. They are

equipped with 144 million dollars with which they can assist the communities to

create these life saving programs. Money will come both from them and federal

government funding. The government pays money to the states to use their own

programs to diminish juvenile crime, but because this has proven ineffective through

the rising juvenile crime rates, this money can be better used on federal programs.

We must recognize how much this problem is hurting us, and be prepared to pay

taxes . But with the help of the organization of juvenile justice, the taxes should be


Plank II: The OJJDP will encourage these preventative plans with and

through the federal government to the states. This organization will consist of the

current members, plus volunteers and paid officials who will work in communities

all over the U.S.

Plank III: Mandates

Mandate 1. Schools will teach choice exercises, discourage violence and

teach law and consequences to younger children in public elementary schools all

over the country. It is obvious from the crime rates that children are not learning

simple morals in their homes! Materials would be supplied through the federal

government. This method which will help the youth of tomorrow to think about

situations before impulsively acting on them.

Mandate 2. "Street workers" will work with juveniles. Boston has had

wonderful success with street workers, volunteer conflict resolution officers. Their

job is to talk to groups of children and teens who hang out on city streets.

Supplying such a program to large cities all over the country would prove beneficial

to both the youths and people of the communities. Also, peer mediation, similar to

street workers, has proved successful in many schools across the country, and

bringing it to all schools will help many more children.

Mandate 3.Schools, gyms, churches, community centers and parks should be

encouraged to supply supervised after school activities which can be funded by the

federal government. Children take to the streets when they are left home alone

while parents are working. This is a preventative method of giving something for

youths to say yes to while bringing out their talents.

Mandate 4. Juveniles who have already been in trouble need professional

counseling. Fully funded counciling , similar to drug rehabilitation programs, will

help in the prevention of further offenses. Putting offenders into these corrective

programs can be sentenced in juvenile courts. However, not only do we have to

concentrate on the offender, but parents should also be required to attend

concealling. The lack of parental guidance is a major root to America's juvenile

crime problem. When the parents are more willing to work with their children, the

chances of that child living a normal life without crime is increased.

Mandate 5. A budget problem that some of the cities in the US share is

funding for the police department. The only way to pay for more police is through

taxes. According to a nation wide survey, 80% of the people didn't mind paying

taxes for a better police force. These will have to be local taxes, but the federal

government should encourage the states to increase funding for the police. The

federal government will also assist in funding all local police. A standard may have

to be made to determine how much of state funds should go to the police.

Plank IV: Enforcement. The affirmative prevention plan shall not be

"enforced", in the sense that the states must accept the assistance, but strongly

encouraged and fully funded for. The volunteers and workers will be controlled and

all programs will be uniform nationwide. When problems arise and sections of the

plan prove ineffective, revision will be allocated for if necessary. The plan will

begin in January of 99, giving time for research and set-up.

This affirmative prevention plan will have the following advantages.

Advantage I. Prevention works. Prevention is a way we can both stop crime before

it happens and have the advantage of helping juveniles to learn important lessons

they can take with them in life. Nation wide prevention has already been endorsed

by President Clinton in his state of the union address when he said,

"...We have seen a stunning and simultaneous

breakdown of community, family, and work. This has

created a vast vacuum which has been filed by

violence, drugs and gangs. So I ask you to remember

that even as we say no to crime, we must give people,

especially our young people something to say 'yes'


Advantage II. The federal government has deeper pockets than the local

governments and therefore the affirmative plan is more cost effective than the status

quo. Money that the states need for schools can be conserved. When comparing

the revenues of a state to the federal government of the U.S.A, it is obvious that the

federal government simply has more money to spend. Also, the plan works better

on a larger scale where the country can benefit, not just cities with enough funding

to cover a single small program.

Advantage III. This nationwide focus on the children of America will help

give them a direction in life. Since the focus is on the education of juveniles and

parents, the family structures in America may be improved. There are many success

stories such as John Walker, age 11, who had the habit of getting into trouble with

the law, including drugs and gang violence. After some professional counseling, he

made straight A's every quarter and was student of the month twice. The generation

of the future may have a future after all if these prevention plans go into effect

This preventative program will allow the federal government to substantially

reduce juvenile crime. Once this net of small plans is integrated into the system, it

can help to solve the problems that are thriving under state control. With the

juvenile crime rates rising so rapidly nation wide, we cannot reduce anything

without a nation wide program. We must rescue our children.

Source: Essay UK -

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