3. a) with each generation, the morals of young people are getting worse, and that deteriorating
can be affiliated as things continuously getting worse. Cultural expression associated with
young people: 1950s-this was a period there was a sense of anxiety but also a connection with
a very specific cultural form. Crime comics were very popular in the 50s. These were a comic
book format initially started in the 30s but became popular in the late 40s. Series include: crime
does not pay, famous crimes, murder incorporated, The Escape King! Prison Break!,
Underworld Crime, Teen-Age Dope Slaves, etc.
Frederic Wertham. Seduction of the innocent, 1954. Book about juvenile offenders and their
criminal behaviour as to why they engage in criminal activities. He noticed how they all read
these types of comics. He talked about how wonder woman was a lesbian and batman and
robin were gay.
1949: Canada creates a law where 2 years imprisonment for anyone making, distributing or
selling crime comics
Criminal Code: Section 163 (b) talks about this
60s: drug use, rock and Roll
70s: drug use and disco phase
80s: Grunge (heavy metal)
90s-present day: hip hop, gangster rap.
b) There was a belief where crime and status of young people wasn’t a significant concern.
Youth crime was understood as a more modern or contemporary problem. This is not true.
1861: 2 eight year old boys murdered a 2 year old. According to police statistics, there is a
concern with youth crime. 1890: the annual report of the chief constable of the city of Toronto
says how youths give trouble in the city and how they are irresponsible.
c) Moral entrepreneurs: claims makers. Examples include parents groups, victims’ rights
groups,teachers & educators, etc. Moral entrepreneurs: there claims are based on moral
anxieties. More about a moral concern. Psychologists, child psychologist in particular, teachers,
and other groups often play a role in mobilizing the claims associated with young people and
d) The media plays a fundamental role such as the sensationlization & inaccurate reporting of
youth crime. The focus on atypical cases that are deemed to be news worthy. These are
reported more, and as such, they have an influence on the public view of youth crime. This is
inaccurate. 94% of youth crime stories in the media were about violent offences when only 25%
of Ontario’s youth court cases actually involved violent offences by young offenders.
e) Politicians play an important role as well because youth crime is an easy target. It is an issue
where people can be mobilized around. The mobilization of a large population that votes is the bread and butter of politics. Youth crime functions as a vote getter but also as an effective
political scape goat.
4. There is a disconnect between the panics and the reality of youth crime. If you look at crime
comics, they had very little relation to reality. It was not a very significant source of juvenile
delinquency. Same thing goes to video games.
5. Approximately 75% of the American public is concerned with school violence. School
shootings are actually incredibly rare and infrequent. As a child, you have a better chance of
being struck by lightning than be involved in a school shooting. We are not paying attention to
the children’s backgrounds such as their parents, family members, etc. The problem is not
school shootings, but the problem is child abuse.
1. 1992-2002: there was a 33% drop in youth crime. Violent youth crime has remained
relatively stable in the last 10 years. Since the late 1190s, youth crime has been
relatively stable. The decrease driven primarily by property offences. It continues to drop
year over year. Violent crime for youth: peaked at 1995, then declined steadily at 1997-
2000. There was a small increase in 2000-2001. Since 2001, there has been a steady
downward trend by 8%.
2. Youth are only responsible for 12% of crime.
3. 3. About 75% are non-violent vs. violent. About 45% is property offences. Shoplifting is
probably one the very common property crimes.
4. About 70% of youth violent assaults are level 1 (pushing, shoving, etc.). When you look
at murder, manslaughter, attempted murder, they account for 1% consist of crimes that
are the most reported in the media.
5. The percentage that each age group is responsible for decreases quite significantly after
16-17 year old. 12 and under are responsible for 3%. For younger offenders, the peak
age of offending is 16.
6. Statistics indicate in this time period, there was a 77% increase in violent youth crime.
a) This drove the overall trend. It increased about 120%.
b) The way teachers, police, and parents were getting concerned about youth crime.
Female offenders increased due to common assault.
7. The largest fear comes from older people. It very rare for adults or seniors to be
8. Kids tend to grow out of crime as they age and mature without doing much about it.
Slide 6 1. Punitivity is increasing over time. Young offenders should be treated more leniently; the
emphasis is on punishment as a key objective of the youth justice system.
2. 1997: only 25% of young people were handled outside the official youth justice system.
Canadian justice system is more punitive compared to other countries.
3. 1997: 1/3 of convictions resulted in custodial sen