On Juvenile Delinquency and Drug Use

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Updated: Mar 28, 2022
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The phenomenon of juvenile delinquency comes from a definition where an individual age from seven to eighteen commits or violates a state law. An example of a juvenile delinquency can be something as minor as staying out past curfew, underage smoking or underage of substances uses to something more significant as to robbing a store or murder. In this analytic essay, I will talk about how a delinquent behavior and how a sociological perspective fits into that behavior. Then, I will do a review on the current literature pertaining to the chosen delinquency and perspective and conclude this essay by identifying major theoretical components and discussing the policy implications.

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As the book mentions, there could be different types of delinquent behaviors and it could be caused by different reasons. Many people can think juvenile delinquency is caused by one specific thing. However, there are other life issues that is connected which could lead juveniles to commit a crime. There are Researchers believe there a multiple factor that cause individuals to have delinquent behavior such as poor educational standards, violence from their living environment, peer pressure and substance use. However, the biggest factor they believe is one of the top factors is poor school attendance. I believe poor school attendance may be a big factor is because if youth have a regular routine they must follow, it gives them a less chance for them to fall into a peer pressured environment.

If they fail to have that type of routine, they will most likely have the mindset they do not to follow or comply with the societal norms which could lead them to a delinquent behavior. Having societal norms instilled in juveniles can be a leading factor for them to not commit crimes. For example, substance use when underage is an act of delinquent behavior. It can be a delinquent behavior because the outcome of substance uses is not always positive. Under substances, juveniles could be robbing a store which could lead into a bigger problem. Not only they rob a store but it could lead to other dangerous factors as to murdering someone. This can connect to the factor of poor attendance and not having societal norms instilled because if juveniles were even planning to use substances, it may be related to peer pressure.

But substance use can go further and end up ruining a young youth career. According to Shaw, there are different types of user of substances: Nonuser, casual users, habitual user and problematic user. These users that are listed are also voluntary but it is the progression that gradually reaches to the point of addiction. Although these substance uses are voluntary, it shows that young youth individuals in groups are more prone to use any type of substances. Career perspective are interrelated with four different types of prerequisites: Users, Substance, Time, and Space.

Conflict perspective is a another to view conflict as a normal feature of social life. Although the substance uses can be known as a delinquency, to some, it could be a normal daily thing in their life. Career perspective views are similar to the employment career because they both experiences rise and downfalls in their life span. However, the usage of substance uses may experience changes in their work and life. According to Shaw, substance use career is the process when an individual is evolving gradually using substance use and abuse over time. From the nonusers of substances to individuals trying the substances can witness changes through stages. Even though the substance use and abuse are evolving over time, it does not mean the use of drugs can be a party of a lifestyle.

However, it does capture the physical changes that effects human bodies and mind. This conflict perspective can have a relation to the juvenile with the delinquent behaviors because they substance uses and abuse can be one factor which causes individuals to grow up to be juveniles. According to the recent studies done by Denton and Kampfe, one out of every six teenagers are suffering from some type of drug. One area they were able to focus was on family. The teenagers that were suffering from the chemical type are usually exposed with drugs by their family. They state substance abuse is a major problem with families that influences adolescent substance abuse to each other in the family. Recently, a sample of 244 undergraduate college students were selected to do a questionnaire on substance uses.

The questionnaire concluded that young adults’ substances use was perceived by family. Peer pressure is a big factor that individuals can relate when they are identified as a juvenile delinquency or asking why that juvenile acted in such a way. Peer pressure amongst your peers can easily be looked the other way because when you are with your peers, there is an option to stay away from the group. However, if a young adult is exposed to substance use every day, especially from their family, it is hard to stay away. If substance use is exposed to a young adult life every day, it is more likely they can be easily peer pressured into drugs. There are cases how individuals can sway even though they are exposed but it is less likely. Individuals with substance use problems is not only the problem in this society. It could lead to factors where other crimes can be involved. If you think about it, substance uses are expensive.

It is hard to purchase and individuals need money. If a juvenile is addicted, they will do whatever it takes to acquire that substance such as robbing a store or even robbing someone else. Substance uses is not only for bad intentions but what it is use for and the outcome it can result in, can be a major juvenile delinquency. However, substance uses can be used for a positive effect. Many individuals use substances uses for social outing or gathering but that too, can always lead into delinquency behavior. For example, during a gathering, when people consume substances, they are open to drive afterwards. If they drive under the influence, it is highly probable to get yourself killed or even other people killed. Or even during that outing, individuals are exposed to outbreak of fighting with each other. These behaviors can be passed down from families as well. If families are easily influenced by I believe the families should have a clear understanding and recognition of their role in their family. The family environment plays a significant role in the use of alcohol and drugs.

Career Perspectives consists with four major components that are interrelated prerequisites: users, substances, time, and space. With the four major components, there are also twelve different types of theoretical images that is a career pathway for drug users: Non-use, initiation, experimentation, escalation, habituation, problematic experiences, treatment, temporary abstinence, relapse, maturing out, retirement and total abstinence. When juveniles use drugs, nothing is set to be permanent. Although, drug use is a changing state. The career perspective was put in place in order for it to be studied to see how it is changing through natural history. Also, a career profile can be placed on an individual to determine if the individual had used any substances in the past, they could predict if they are going to or just predict any future use.

Overall, people have the right to choose whether or not to intake any type of substance uses. As Shaw stated, when juveniles decide to use substances, the initial first decision to consume any substance uses is all voluntary for most people. But repeated usage of the drugs can lead to permanent damage physically and emotionally. It urges them to believe that substance usage is the only way to go. When substances usage is first initiated, individuals do not understand why or how individuals can get addicted to substance uses. When people started to “crave” it more, it could show a sign of addiction. With the addiction of substance uses, it may lead to more problems in the community. Although addiction are hard to get rid, there is a stoppage. According to Shaw, there are three levels of stoppage.

One of the stoppage is the physiology level which it defines as the individual stopping from substances uses is in a voluntary and involuntary form. The benefit side is he voluntary stoppage does not require any effort from the user. Second stoppage is the psychological level. This level occurs when the individual that use substances loses interest. Losing interest could come in different ways. People can have a bad experience and decide to stop or just lose an type of sensational feeling that the substances brought of the purpose they were using it. Last stoppage is the economical level. I believe this level is the bravest of the levels. It is hard for individuals to admit they are addicited to use an substances. This level is the process where individuals are able to reach out and seek help from the community. It shows their determination. From a personal level, my brother was suffering from marijuana addiction.

His family wanted to tell him he was addicted but he was not brave enough to admit it. None of the levels worked but after an big car accident, he was brave enough to seek for economical help. Usage of the substance uses may have a big impact on the community such as problems and burdensome. But on the other hand, substance uses can be used to make the community a brighter place and make it an eventful place. This essay is not to say that substance uses could only lead to problematic events but individuals also use substances in different situations. Many of the youth individuals use substances uses when they are at party or a rave. Some states, the state laws legalized certain types of substance uses because it proved that it does not only lead to bad events but could also help individuals. Learning the career perspective, it helps to create an understand of substance use and abuse to other perspectives.

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On Juvenile Delinquency And Drug Use. (2022, Feb 10). Retrieved from https://papersowl.com/examples/on-juvenile-delinquency-and-drug-use/