ERIC Number: ED287762
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986
Reference Count: N/A
Crime: What We Fear, What Can Be Done. National Issues Forum Series.
Melville, Keith, Ed.
This booklet, designed for use in secondary social studies classes and adult groups, explores the differing perspectives on the causes and prevention of violent crime. The problem, according to the first perspective, is that the sharp increase in crime is due to the absence of punishment. The most promising solution is to get tougher with all criminals, increase enforcement efforts, appoint tougher judges, impose longer jail sentences, and build more prisons. The second view of crime and punishment is that there needs to be an identification of the relatively small group of criminals who are high-rate offenders, and a recognition that in important ways they are not deterred by harsher prison sentences. Chronic offenders need to be taken off the streets. The third perspective proposes that it is necessary to look at the corrosive social and economic forces that lead to criminality and make a serious effort not just to contain crime, but to prevent it. Proponents of this position recognize that it is no small task to change the social and economic conditions which now provide a breeding ground for crime. As an immediate measure, alternatives to incarceration should be explored. If a society that is less dangerous, less fearful, and less torn by violence is to be built, the causes and prevention of crime must be considered. (SM)
Descriptors: Community Programs, Correctional Institutions, Crime, Crime Prevention, Criminal Law, Criminals, Criminology, Disadvantaged, Instructional Materials, Juvenile Gangs, Law Enforcement, Law Related Education, Police, Secondary Education, Sentencing, Social Influences, Social Psychology, Social Studies
Publication Type: Guides - Classroom - Learner; Guides - Classroom - Teacher
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Students; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: Public Agenda Foundation, New York, NY.; Domestic Policy Association, Dayton, OH.
Note: For related documents, see SO 018 345-346.