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Should Juveniles Be Tried as Adults is an essay by Laurence Steinberg which expresses his views of if when and why youth offenders should be tried as adults He compares the juvenile system to the adult system and point out hat the two differ in their respective forms of decision making for treatment or discipline In the recent past society has redefined the judicial system for juveniles and is striving to get more youth offenders trued and disciplined in adult jail systems 632 According to Steinberg this represents a fundamental challenge to the very premise that the juvenile court was founded on - that adolescents and adults are different 632 and these forms of discipline are detrimental to the rehabilitation of young criminals The author poses the question of how effective the judicial system is at determining when a child is to be tried as an adult and points out three very distinct characteristics of an adolescent individual between the ages of 12 and 17 First he states that there are dramatic changes in individuals physical intellectual emotional and social capabilities between these ages 632 Secondly he claims that between theses ages individuals that have broken laws are still open to many positive influences that may help them abandon their criminal instincts and tendencies 632 Lastly he points out that youth offenders who are sentenced to harsh punishments as adolescents often do not recover from the mental harm it causes because it is an important developmental time and these experiences may have lasting and disadvantageous effects on their adult behaviors 632 In a second argument Steinberg explains that he doesnt believe that the age of a young defendant should be overlooked and as seen earlier in the essay uses three main points to illustrate this idea First he expresses that the legal system has a set of regulations and customs which differs from the individualistic and informal setting of a juvenile court 633 For further
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