Vaughn, Shellenberger, Ward 1 Erik Vaughn, Rachel Shellenberger, Shelby Ward Mrs. Huff English 11 May 21, 2009 Do Curfews Actually Keep Teens Out of Trouble? In The Effectiveness and Importance of a Teen Curfew Law, Snyder, Sickmund, and Seibert were quoted stating that "in the period from 1988 to 1993, the rates of violent crimes such as homicides, rapes, assaults, and robberies committed by teens rose more than 60%, and murderrelated arrests of teens nearly doubled." (Sutphen, Ford) Though the increase in crime rate is a fact, the way to deal with the crime is an opinionative battle. Are these curfews an effective way to end crime? Or are curfews just another way to restrict the rights of teens everywhere? Many teens would agree curfews are non effective. Over 3/4 of the United States 200 largest cities now have curfew. Most of them are from the time 11:00 pm to sunrise, but what happens to the kids that are working, or coming from community or church events? According to James Fox, a Northeastern University criminologist, "curfews don't work." He argues that kids commit most crimes in the late afternoon when they are out of school and unsupervised. Erme Pacheco, 14, of Washington, D.C., says "curfews won't stop all of the violence, like the kids who are already in gangs."(Beck) Also most of the crimes by teens are from the time of 36 pm, which is before curfews take affect. (Curfews)
Vaughn, Shellenberger, Ward 2 Many uneducated adults in the united states believe that all kids out late are just getting into trouble, however the majority of teens that are out late are the kids that are trying to avoid family because of abuse, or just having bad home lives in general. According to an unknown author of The New York Times, communities with good community programs have had the crime rate of teens greatly reduced. Giving teens a place to get away from their home in a positive and safe environment will reduce the crime rate. The kids can also meet with counselors to talk about their problems and their situation. (Curfews) Getting teens involved around the community and afterschool programs instead of running around town causing problems would be the ideal and best way to reduce the crime rate in most communities now days. When growing up teens usually have two main role models, your parents. They know how responsible their child is and how much slack can be given. Saying that, a curfew should be based on what teen’s parents think and not just what the city gives out. Discipline starts young. If a parent teaches their kid responsibility at a young age they should be able to be trusted when out late when they get to be a teenager. Not every teen is partying when they are out at a late hour. There have been many times that I have just wanted to go get something to eat at night, and having a curfew I wasn't able to. Also, if I was to stay at a friend’s house and just needed to run home because I forgot something, I am not able to do that just because I am a teenager. If my parents know what I am up to when I am out and about, I shouldn't be getting in trouble for being out late. Although many people think that a curfew is the way to go to keep teens out of trouble, the final decision should be up to the parents and the communities to help kids
Vaughn, Shellenberger, Ward 3 stay out of trouble. Communities should have good programs and counseling classes for teens and kids with trouble. Also eliminating some extra time after school where most crimes are made, will significantly reduce the crime rate of towns and cities all across America.
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WORKS CITED Beck, Melinda. "Why Aren't You Home." 11 May 2009 <http://http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=bsh&AN=9507187563&site=ehostlive>. Curfews and Common Sense." 11 June 1996. 9 May 2009 <http://http://www.nytimes.com/1996/06/11/opinion/curfewsandcommon sense.html?scp=1&sq=Curfews%20and%20Common%20Sense.&st=cse>. "Do Curfews Punish Innocent Teens?" 9 May 2009 <http://http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=f5h&AN=71911&site=ehostlive>. "Grounded... Every Night?" 9 May 2009 <http://http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=f5h&AN=18520537&site=ehostlive>. Sutphen, and Ford. "The Effectiveness and Importance of a Teen Curfew Law." 11 May 2009<http://http://search.ebscohost.com/login.aspx? direct=true&db=afh&AN=5473127&site=ehostlive>.