Argumentative Essay on Prop 21

Topics: Crime, Criminology, Prison Pages: 4 (1521 words) Published: April 23, 2012
Prop 21
As the years go by the amount of children being tried as adults is increasing and what many don’t see is we have to make a change to that. The juvenile justice system was created in the late 1800s to improve the U.S. policies regarding youth offenders. It is believed youth could be rehabilitated and needs to be protected and kept separate from the adult criminals. But when California passed Prop 21 the policy changed and young offenders were punished rather than rehabilitated. According to The League Of Women Voters information packet: “Proposition 21 protects Californians from criminals who don't respect human life. It prescribes life imprisonment for gang members who commit home-invasion robberies, carjacking’s or drive-by shootings; allows tougher sentences for teenage murderers and rapists; and requires gang members to register with police. Prosecutors, police, victims and parents say vote yes!” In my opinion I think prop 21 is a bad idea for the following reasons first it will cost hundreds of millions of dollars each year. Everyone who pays taxes from the amount they pay now can increase. While browsing the internet I came across this question “In your opinion, is it justified for children who aren’t in gangs but happen to know about gang crimes ahead of time to be punished or put in jail?” The answer Ezeoma Obioha said was: No, that’s the problem with Prop. 21. It makes it much easier to convict an individual of being in a gang. Just because somebody happens to know about the gang activity ahead of time doesn’t mean that they should be punished. I fully agree with Ezeoma Obioha many of children are surrounded with gangsters they are either family or they happen to have grown in the same town as them. In life you are not given the choice to choose whom to be surrounded of.

It is obvious that children are not adults and they should not be tried as one. What they are doing is forcing them to live a life as a criminal. For example,...

Cited: Obiaha, Ezeoma. "Judge Calls New Juvenile Justice Law Ridiculous." LA Youth. LA Youth, 13 Apr. 2012. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. <>.
"Proposition 21: Juvenile Crime - California State Government." Smart Voter by the League of Women Voters. Comprehensive, Nonpartisan Election Information. 7 Mar. 2000. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. <>.
Schwartz, Robert. "Kids Should Never Be Tried as Adults." CNN. 18 Feb. 2010. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. <>.
Steinberg, Laurence. "The Future Of Children." The Future Of Children. Princetons/Bookings, 2008. Web. 16 Apr. 2012. <>.
Wilson, Pete. "Proposition 21 - Juvenile Crime. Initiative Statute." CalTax. Web. 17 Apr. 2012. <>.
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