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Youth Curfews

Can youth curfews deter the amount of crimes committed within our societies? Today, over 300 cities have adopted the curfew laws (NCPA). However, only fifty-percent found them effective. Studies have shown that there is no true link between juvenile crimes and curfews. These restrictions also interfere with the liberty of the teens. Several factors have been ignored. For example, several teens may have a part-time job, requiring them to "violate" their curfews. Therefore, I believe that youth curfews should not be enforced within our societies.

Within the past decade, research has proven that youth curfews do not deter crime within our communities (IDEA). Many believe that curfews will keep their teens off the streets at night, preventing common crimes such as graffiti and drug dealing. However, the reduction is usually caused by other crime-preventing techniques, such as the zero-tolerance policy. In fact, studies have shown that the majority of juvenile crimes occur outside the regular curfew hours. Another downfall of curfews is that it violates teens' freedom.

The curfews restrict the teens from several options (IDEA). This includes part-time jobs and youth clubs. If teens participate in these activities, they may violate their curfews. This factor causes them to become criminals. Some may argue that the irresponsible parents are treated for by the curfews, as their children are protected. However, what about the already law-abiding teens? They are limited by the restrictions that they have proved they do not need! Therefore, the curfews are unfair to teens with legitimate reasons for not being accompanied by an adult.


Another misconception of curfews is that they will train teens to become more responsible of their actions (Knudson). If they are unable to have their freedom of choice, they will tend to become more rebellious. This has the exact opposite of the desired effect! As stated in the Declaration of Independence, “…they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness.” The restrictions violate their guaranteed rights of freedom and satisfaction.


The teen curfews being enforced are not beneficial, as they negatively affect our societies in several ways. Many believe that the curfews train teens to become more responsible. However, the teens’ freedom is limited, as they are unable to participate in activities that occur during the curfew hours. As studies have proven the restrictions do not reduce juvenile crime, I believe that youth curfews should not be enforced.





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This article has 2 comments. Post your own now!

JaxBby said...
Oct. 11, 2012 at 2:19 pm
I think curfews really don't help with crimes. If a child is going to commit a crime he or she is going to do it regardless of how late they're out at night. Curfews are just an excuse to arrest an underage teens. Just because it's late at night doesn't mean a person is doing something illegal or commiting crimes.
 
malatov2 said...
Oct. 25, 2011 at 8:21 pm
curfews are imoral and criminal, violence from the mafia to remove compition. (mafia meaning the pigs.
 
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