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The American juvenile justice system was designed over 100 years ago to reform kids who were found guilty of minor crimes such as petty theft and truancy. Today, the system is becoming overwhelmed by crimes of violence by children. Stealing and skipping school have been replaced by violent crimes, such as rape and murder. The juvenile justice system was never built to deal with these kinds of problems with children. The juvenile justice system of the past sought to rehabilitate youthful offenders by taking a protective stance over juvenile delinquents. However, the "protect instead of punish" ideology of yesterday, better dealt with yesterday\'s crimes.
Although juvenile delinquency is decreasing, there is still a need to address some issues…..how do we deal with juveniles committing crimes? Incarceration or rehabilitation? Today as juvenile crime has become more common and violent, the juvenile justice system has been forced to make necessary changes. Should the justice system become a ground of harsher punishment, and limit it\'s rehabilitative efforts only to those who deem themselves worthy of re-entry into today\'s society? In American society, punishment rather than rehabilitation has shown to be more favored for juveniles who commit crimes. Should this thought process change? The justice system must begin looking at ways to emphasize rehabilitation and prevention programs for juvenile offenders, with an emphasis on prevention programs. But how did we as a societ...