- Subject index
Juvenile justice policies have historically been built on a foundation of myths and misconceptions. Fear of young, drug-addled superpredators, concerns about immigrants and gangs, claims of gender biases, and race hostilities have influenced the public's views and, consequently, the evolution of juvenile justice. These myths have repeatedly confused the process of rational policy development for the juvenile justice system.
Juvenile Justice: Redeeming Our Children debunks myths about juvenile justice in order to achieve an ideal system that would protect vulnerable children and help build safer communities. Author Barry Krisberg assembles broad and up-to-date research, statistical data, and theories on the U.S. juvenile justice system to encourage effective responses to youth crime. This text gives a historical context to the ongoing quest for the juvenile justice ideal ...
Chapter Five: Juvenile Justice and the American Dilemma
Juvenile Justice and the American Dilemma
At the dawn of the 20th century the great American sociologist and social activist W. E. B. DuBois proclaimed that the “problem of the color line” would be the central issue of that century (DuBois, 1903). As we enter the 21st century, his prophetic words still ring true. The juvenile justice system is plagued by racial disparities and inequities that challenge its legitimacy. Despite a dominant philosophy that seeks to be “race neutral,” the decision-making processes of the juvenile justice system are anything but neutral for children of color. In this chapter the extent of this grave problem will be examined, explanations for its existence will be explored, and potential remedies will be considered.