Examines the 2000 California ballot measure. Presents argument for and against the "get-tough" initiative which passed. Changes in the juvenile justice system resulting from Prop 21. Legal definition of juvenile. Philosophy of juvenile courts. Issues of public safety, youth gangs, growing violence of juvenile crimes, treatment of juveniles. Contends the inititative is flawed.
Juvenile crime has become one of America’s most prominent issues, even as the overall crime rate has declined to the lowest point in decades.... more
Juvenile crime has become one of America’s most prominent issues, even as the overall crime rate has declined to the lowest point in decades. Several celebrated cases have helped create an image of teenagers run amok and younger and younger kids committing major felonies. Once apprehended, these children enter a juvenile justice system that many claim utilizes an outdated approach. In some cases, murderers have gone free at age 25 simply because that is the incarceration limit for the juvenile justice system.
In response, an advocacy group placed a get-tough measure (called Proposition 21) on the California ballot. This initiative, which passed overwhelmingly (62 percent to 38 percent), calls for dramatic changes in the juvenile justice system. This paper will examine Proposition 21, highlighting the argum