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Cops Out Of Control Or Rotten Youth?

By the time they’re old enough to vote, roughly one in three Americans has had at least one criminal arrest. Does that mean a rotten youth here? Or is it cops that are out of control?

By age 23, an estimated 33 percent — and perhaps as many as 41 percent of young adults — have been arrested at least once, excluding traffic violations. If you are wondering: arson topped the list, followed by vandalism, disorderly conduct, robbery, burglary and car theft.

Of course, arrest does not mean guilt. Many of those arrested are not even charged. But it’s still an exceptional statistic and nowhere else comes close, not even communist China or the old Soviet Union.

Given that young adults are but lately children, pediatricians have a role in preventing violent or unsafe behaviors in young at-risk patients. It is obvious that kids don’t get arrested in isolation, but there will be other issues are going on in their lives.

The new study appears online Dec. 12 and in the January 2012 print issue of Pediatrics. The researchers used National Longitudinal Survey of Youth data from 1997 to 2008 for 7,335 young people aged 8 to 23.

Having lived here for over 8 years, I can tell you it true that the US criminal justice system is more punitive than in most countries. In the years since 1972, the proportion of jailed citizens has gone up fivefold. They are still building more and more jails. None of it is working but that doesn’t stop what is, essentially, a very cruel, stupid and revengeful society from dealing harshly with its misfits.

It’s a kind of hypocrisy, of course.

[SOURCE: January 2012, Pediatrics]

The post Cops Out Of Control Or Rotten Youth? appeared first on Alternative Doctor Dev Site.

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