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Juvenile Delinquency

             Do you remember doing something mischievous or wrong when you were a kid and getting the label "delinquent" slapped on you? Did you ever wonder what it meant? The definition of deviance has changed over the centuries and what were once considered acts of demonic possession in regards to criminal action are now considered violent reactions to elements within society. (No Author, 2001). Juvenile delinquents have long been considered deviants to society because their actions do not "conform" to the norms of society and in fact "offend" society. (Roberts, 1995).
             Issues associated with juvenile delinquency are always multi-faceted and present numerous challenges to parents, educators social service agencies, law enforcement, the court systems and, of course, to the actual child. (Roberts, 1995). Whether a child is abused, raised in poverty, has physical and/or mental problems, or any number of other difficulties, it is always the child who suffers and the child who should be kept at the forefront of society's collective consciousness in addressing the problems of juvenile delinquency. (Champion, 2001).
             Over the years, countless efforts have been made to find a comprehensive explanation for delinquency. The results of these efforts have offered possible reasons as being both biological and social. (Roberts, 1995). It is still debatable as to what forces have the greatest influence on youth crime, but it is undoubted that several factors clearly make an impact. The direct relationships a child has with concrete social elements, like his family and friends, are likely to give some intimation of his involvement in crime. However, it must be noted that there are contexts that are more abstract for socialization that also exist as potential explanations for a child's behavior. (Champion, 2001).
             Between 1983 and 1992, juvenile arrest rates jumped 128% for murder and non-negligent manslaughter, 95% for aggravated assault, and 25% for rape.

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