Explaining Car Theft and Delinquency Using Hirschi’s Social Control Theory Introduction Hirschi’s (1969) social control theory suggests that the relationship with people, personal values, and beliefs as well as how busy people are discourages them from breaking the law. Consequently, the emergence and occurrence of juvenile acts as crime is triggered by the absence of strong social bonds (White, 1992). Hirschi’s Social Control theory has a weakness when applied in establishing the motif behind a crime. This essay establishes the application and discusses the influence of Hirschi’s theory with regards to juvenile car theft. The essay also discusses the four variables of Hirschi’s Social Control Theory namely: attachment, commitment, involvement and belief.
Much behaviour that was seen as deviant in the past has today become a criminal offence, as with crime behaviour seen as criminal is now seen as deviant. Deviance can be criminal or non-criminal, but crime is always criminal in nature. Deviance is not considered as severe as a crime. The punishment of being deviant is not as harsh as an act of crime. Deviance is not breaking the law like crime; it is moving away from a set of standards established by society the social norms.
The high likelihood of detection by the police, and the deterrent effects of punishment have been seen as forms of crime prevention. But the traditional criminal justice agencies have prevention as a sort of side effect or unintended consequence of their main aim of detection and punishment. And they are, as we have seen in previous lectures, not that efficient. Specific measures aimed at preventing crime have always been around in an everyday sense. Families, schools and communities disapprove of crime and this acts as a form of 'informal social control' People lock their doors and windows against burglars, and perhaps avoid badly lit areas, or certain parts of town, with the intention of reducing the likelihood of victimisation.
It is only through this broader understanding and exploration of the issues that an accurate understanding of the ‘crime problem’ can be obtained. The complexities and multiple perspectives on crime are not well understood by the public. This lack of understanding runs counter to the degree by which modern society is saturated by the subject of crime. It is almost impossible to live within our current society and not in someway be affected by it. We do not need to be an offender appearing in court or a victim of crime to feel its affects.
For instance if there are more employed people in the neighborhood the need for crime should go down, because then people have the means to make a living, and this sets a good example for the children in the communities that see people work hard to have a livelihood. Social control theory is when the norm in one’s household is not the norm for the rest of the community. Social control teaches what the norm is by the right social interaction with the right influencing people. (Barbra D. Warner, 2010) (Justice Research and Statistics Association, 1998-2012) Labeling Theory In choosing the labeling theory, prison rehabilitation I thought most related to one another. The labeling theory is a type of stereotyping for example, once a cheat always a cheat.
That usually means reverting to street crimes. These crimes include burglary, vandalism, and selling drugs. Those individuals feel that street crime is the only way they will obtain material success. Merton's theory may stand true when comparing social status with street crime; however, his theory becomes weak when the crimes include white-collar and business crimes. Therefore, Merton's theory has become an “anomie theory”.
(Hallam et al. 2005: 56) Some crimes however are not reported because the victim may be intimidated by the person responsible for the crime, or they may not have faith in the police to pursue the crime if they do report it. Other victims of crime may not report it as they feel that the crime is too minor, or that the police will think it is too minor to pursue. A large amount of sexual crime goes unreported because the victim is either too shocked, afraid or embarrassed. Police can use their discretion as to whether or not an incident is worth reporting, they have to decide if the incident is serious
The reasons are complex but easy to understand. My recommendation is that the government should focus more on fighting poverty since its most likely the easiest way to lower crime rates. Why Poverty leads to Crime: Along with the evolution of human beings, the development of crime has been developing. For almost 3000 years we commit crimes and consider certain places or cities a breeding point for criminal activities. But why do we commit crime and why are the crime rates in certain places like Compton, East St. Louis or Detroit so high?
Therefore, killing in self defense is a legal crime. Legal crimes are acts that are not harmful to another person, however; these acts are defined as crimes by society because of the influence these crimes have on those who are in authority. Legal crimes are less serious because they cause less harm, are not as frequent and are not as widespread. People who commit assault, fraud, embezzlement, vandalism, prostitution, and disorderly conduct are committing legal crimes. Legal crimes are not an obvious crime and do not have an obvious victim.
The lower class boys are at the bottom of the social structure and have little chance of gaining a higher status in society. This is similar to Merton’s STRAIN theory, however Cohen said that instead of turning to crime, they reject the norms and values of mainstream society and instead turn to the norms and values of a delinquent subculture AO2. In this subculture the boys can achieve success because the social group has different norms and values from the rest of society. So in this culture a high value is placed upon criminal acts such as stealing and vandalism which are condemned by mainstream society AO1. In these subcultures the individual who doesn’t have a high status in mainstream society can gain it by committing crimes such as