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Richard
08-04-2006, 02:26 AM
I'm doing this rough essay for my English class and I need some ideas. Its purpose is really to get me going, but if I ever run out of things to say I can always refer to this thread. Here is the prompt: Should parents be held legally and financially responsible for crimes committed by their children under the age of eighteen? Please don't forget to say "why" along with your answer. No and yes doesn't help anyone. ;)

You don't have to give me a long response unless you want to, the more the better I suppose. I just want to know what some of you have to say about this particular issue.

kingdumbass
08-04-2006, 02:53 AM
As a former rebellious teenager, I can tell you that parents can only control their offspring to a certain point....
By the time I was 16, I was out of control, and I just didn't care what my parents tried to do about it. It would have been ridiculous for them to be held responsible for the things I did over which they had no REAL control, and even attempted to prevent.

Swordsman
08-04-2006, 02:53 AM
well i'm gonna say no, the kid should be responsible but only if the parents had no idea. this reminds me of a time when i lied to my parents, said i was staying somewhere else but instead went to a party that was a few blocks away. around 1am i decided it was a good idea to fill a beer bottle with my own urine and throw it at the church that was a block away. i got in big trouble because i cracked one of those fancy windows. now i got caught because apparently someone called the cops on one kid throwing a bottle and four other kids urinating on a church and being loud.

now my parents had no idea i was where i was or what i was doing. so it is my own fault for the trouble i got in. it wasn't their fault because they didn't give me booze and they thought i was playin' video games or whatever. my parents still got in trouble because i still had alcohol in me.

i had to pay around 300 bucks to replace the fancy pieces of glass i broke. which my parents had to pay for but i had to pay them back.

the fact is it was my fault. this happened last summer and i'm not even 16 yet.

mehrdad368
08-04-2006, 03:02 AM
In fact most of child fight with eachother.for this reason i think may be gang violation & drug dealing nowaday sent them to prison.

deviljet88
08-04-2006, 03:44 AM
They shouldn't be liable legally and financially. They're already demoralised enough, knowing that they failed in bringing up their children as civilised beings.

Liam
08-04-2006, 04:01 AM
Thats exactly the reason they should be made financially and legally liable for the children's actions. Parents should be able to exercise control over their children, and children should have enough respect for their parents to obey. Part of the reason the world is in such terrible shape is that parents cannot control their children. I reckon there should be some form of test to prove you will be a capable parent.

If a child commits a crime, the child should be disciplined, just as anyone else would be. In addition, the child's parents should be penalised for failing to instill the correct values in the child. If this means paying for any damage the child caused, cleaning graffiti off walls, or paying support payments to any victims of a crime, then so be it. I'd wager that the parents would be more eager to do a better job in the future.

You'll find that if you act with maturity and prove yourself to be trustworthy without supervision, your parents will allow you to do a lot more of the things you want to do.

dave
08-04-2006, 05:14 AM
That's exactly the reason they should be made financially and legally liable for the children's actions. Parents should be able to exercise control over their children, and children should have enough respect for their parents to obey.

This list goes worldwide. There are people from all over the world on here. You are asking a question which only applies to a small part of the world.

Some time back, "the west" invented a thing called a "teenager." That definition has caused alot of problems. In many of the countries (other than "the west") there is no such distinction. Children may live at home, or they may live on the streets. It is disingenuous to apply your solution to the rest of the world.

Having said that: I have noticed (having raised four children) that the definition of "children" is wrong. A girl often essentially leaves home at about fifteen. They spend all their time, and learn their attitudes and morals from their friends. Sometimes you live far enough away from that peer group to keep that from happening for awhile. Boys tend to take an extra year. I think I "ran away" from home and "lived in my car for at least a week" three times when I was sixteen. I suspect that nowadays we might be talking about thirteen and fourteen.

It is unreasonable to hold the parents responsible for the actions of kids who no longer respect their parents. However, there must be consequences for truly nefarious deeds. We do not want a generation of kids who "shotgun" their parents and pretend they didn't know what they were doing. We also need an escape path for children who are being abused at home.
I want to add the link to America's foremost "Children's Advocate" here. (http://www.vachss.com)

Unfortunately, change takes time. Children can't wait for change. So, in keeping with this thought, I guess I'd vote that children should be immediately locked up when caught, and the dreaded "Social Worker" structure called in to determine "who is responsible." Many times, an abused child will "act up" because they are terrified of "telling."

Now, situations involving "Big City Kids" and "Gangs" are different. Children who live in Big Cities are completely different from my kids who lived a mile up a dirt road in the country. The System should know the difference.

I'd guess there is no "complete" answer. But, I would evaluate the home before I assigned blame. But, I would make sure that the child went immediately to jail. (Some tiny city jail where they get a "taste" of the justice system.) AND I wouldn't call the parents for the very maximum of the 72 hours permitted under our laws. If the parents didn't find the kids by calling the Police, I'd have a good starting point for the evaluation. And I'd have an instant place to start with assigning responsibility for the child's actions.
and here are a list of resource links for Children in Trouble (http://www.vachss.com/help_text/index.html)

kingdumbass
08-04-2006, 06:00 AM
You are being unreasonable and unrealistic if you think that a parent is truly responsible for EVERY dumb thing a child or teenager does....
By their very nature, children have poor judgement; they will do stupid things on an impulse and with no real reason. It is not always preventable. If it were possible to be sure that a child NEVER misbehaves, there would be no need to distinguish them from adults in the first place.

Should a parent be held responsible for a child's PATTERN of repeated misbehavior and criminal activity? Maybe. That's certainly more reasonable than making the assumption that any given isolated incident is the direct result of parental failure.

deviljet88
08-04-2006, 06:32 AM
Thats exactly the reason they should be made financially and legally liable for the children's actions. Parents should be able to exercise control over their children, and children should have enough respect for their parents to obey.

Oh, it's easy to say what should happen. Kids aren't all made as blank pieces of paper you can write instructions for. It's the price that comes with modern society. I suppose there were less problems when parents were allowed to bash their kids.

marine
08-04-2006, 07:05 AM
In my opinion it depends on the age of the "child" and its maturity. Obivously parent should be held responsible of the action of their children if they didn't watch enough their 8 year old and he/she ended up breaking the window of a shop or something.

Now if a "child" is old enough to have conscience that was he does is wrong, not only by his parents standards but also by society's ones and if the parents could have not prevented it in anyway, well I think that they should not be held liable.

Jacoby
08-04-2006, 03:00 PM
Sure, kids aren't all blank pieces of paper, but I think with the right amount of parental control, discipline, caring, and love the kid can understand right from wrong, and know what he should or shouldn't do. I agree with Liam, the parents should be liable.

My parents raised me to have a pretty strong conscience. I could never steal. It would be embarassing, I know it's wrong, and I'd never be inclined. If my parents just didn't care when I was younger and never spent as much time with me, telling right from wrong, then I'd have a lot more DVDs than I do right now. Yes, there are fucked up kids in the world, like that girl who puts pins in her little brother or whatever, but that's usually a result of a huge emotional trauma (probably brought upon by the parents...)

Ranman
08-04-2006, 03:32 PM
Hang the little bastards

Foeni
08-04-2006, 04:15 PM
As soon as the children reach the age where they can be punished the parents should no longer be held responsible. You can't keep a 16-year-old kid inside all the time. Being to strict on children only make them more rebellious. As I see it, at the age of 15 you are (at least in Denmark) old enough to be charged for the crimes you commit - thus the child itself is being held responsible for the crime. The parents often have no saying in what the kids do. So no matter if the parents know their kid is doing some shit, they still shouldn't be held responsible. So my answer is no, Richard.

Nick Serre
08-04-2006, 07:17 PM
I was brought up to respect people, including my parents. When I messed up, as I did like all teenagers, the only punishment I needed was a look of dissatisfaction. If I had gone down a worse route, that would have been my problem for getting in with the wrong crowd or whatever. I didn't because me parents taught me respect. But if parents are indcapable of teaching respect I still don't think they should be held financially responsible. As far as I'm aware, in the UK, a child of 10 years can be put in borstal. I know kids that has happened to, and it sure as hell gave them an idea of respect.

once_dreaded
09-04-2006, 12:20 AM
I was a very mature kid, I didn't participate in illegal activities until after I turned 18 because I didn't want my mother to have to be responsible for my actions. KIds today aren't mature enough and are growing up being babysat by the television and the net. Parents need to be more involved with their kids' lives and dole out punishments if the kid doesn't adhere to the rules of the house. I think if a child commits a crime then the child needs to be held responsible so that they understand that there are consequences for your actions. The legal system in the US is crappy about that...
example: my ex-step-dtr (15 at the time) got caught in a park after curfew and received a ticket from an officer due to her being under the influence of alcohol and out after curfew. The police didn't bother to contact her mother to inform her of the dtr's whereabouts or activities. The only reason we found out about the ticket was because the courts mailed out a notice that the dtr had to complete drug/alcohol counseling. According to the notice the dtr would have to have drug screening done every two weeks as well as attend 10 meetings. Guess what...she attended 3 meetings and wouldn't speak with the counselor and because her THC levels went down after 4 drug screenings she was allowed to stop her sessions, complete BS if you ask me. None of that fixed her use of pot, alcohol, or other illegal activities...it just encouraged her to do it more because the system let her get away with it. I'm not EVEN going to touch on the mother because she wouldn't discipline the child worth a damn.
I personally don't want to have kids because of the current state of the world but I can guarantee that if I DID have kids they would be disciplined and know not to f*ck-up because the cops wouldn't be the ones to be afraid of...I would be the one to fear.

Swordsman
09-04-2006, 02:32 AM
i just think that the thing is that all kids know when they do something wrong, so they should be charged. and if the parents knew what their kids were doing then they should be charged as well.

hasselbrad
11-04-2006, 01:58 PM
I'm doing this rough essay for my English class and I need some ideas. Its purpose is really to get me going, but if I ever run out of things to say I can always refer to this thread. Here is the prompt: Should parents be held legally and financially responsible for crimes committed by their children under the age of eighteen? Please don't forget to say "why" along with your answer. No and yes doesn't help anyone. ;)

You don't have to give me a long response unless you want to, the more the better I suppose. I just want to know what some of you have to say about this particular issue.

To a certain degree, it's impossible to hold a parent responsible for everything their child does. Most parents who find out their child has done something wrong are willing to punish the child and set an example. However, there are many instances where parents have enabled wrong or destructive behavior through a lack of parenting or over-indulgence.
I don't know if y'all remember this case or not, but there was a five year old girl who was arrested and handcuffed by police after she threw a tantrum that caused her classroom to be emptied. Videotape showed the girl repeatedly assaulting a teacher and breaking/destroying anything she could get her hands on. Her mother threw a fit, but then went away when a lot of evidence surfaced that she had been warned repeatedly about her daughter's behavior, and what the consequences would be. This woman had failed miserably at parenting. Her daughter had been raised in an environment devoid of consequences and was unable to understand that the threat of being handcuffed was real. The mother, in this case, should be held responsible for any and all damage caused by her daughter.
As for over-indulgence, I'm mainly talking about parents who buy their kids expensive cars when they turn sixteen, and turn them loose. When I lived in Atlanta, there was hardly a week that passed, that some teenager didn't cause a wreck that cost someone their life. In one instance, a sixteen year old girl ran over and killed a mother and daughter while trying to send a text message and driving. This is another instance where parents should be held responsible for their child's actions.

Keira lover
19-07-2007, 06:18 PM
In a world were the criminal justice system actually is about justice, it would. But in practicality, it depends. Parents are one of the most important influences over children: true. But if some kid kills someone, should the parents go to jail: NO If the kid brakes someones property should they pay: no, but do they: yes. We don't blame Ted Bundy's parents for his 72 kills. we blame ted. We can't punish the parent unless they show that they encouraged or at least didn't care about what the kid becomes.. IE, if some boys father stands by and gives him pointers during a murder, then we throw him in prison with the kid.

hasselbrad
19-07-2007, 06:22 PM
In a world were the criminal justice system actually is about justice, it would. But in practicality, it depends. Parents are one of the most important influences over children: true. But if some kid kills someone, should the parents go to jail: NO If the kid brakes someones property should they pay: no, but do they: yes. We don't blame Ted Bundy's parents for his 72 kills. we blame ted. We can't punish the parent unless they show that they encouraged or at least didn't care about what the kid becomes.. IE, if some boys father stands by and gives him pointers during a murder, then we throw him in prison with the kid.

Ted Bundy was an adult. You're comparing apples to landmines.

Ranman
19-07-2007, 06:22 PM
IE, if some boys father stands by and gives him pointers during a murder, then we throw him in prison with the kid.

If he is there and doesn't stop the murder and encourages him to do it, Yes he should go to jail as well

Leonie
19-07-2007, 08:03 PM
In a world were the criminal justice system actually is about justice, it would. But in practicality, it depends. Parents are one of the most important influences over children: true. But if some kid kills someone, should the parents go to jail: NO If the kid brakes someones property should they pay: no, but do they: yes. We don't blame Ted Bundy's parents for his 72 kills. we blame ted. We can't punish the parent unless they show that they encouraged or at least didn't care about what the kid becomes.. IE, if some boys father stands by and gives him pointers during a murder, then we throw him in prison with the kid.

There's a difference between crimes that stem from a crazy mind and those that stem from a lack of discipline. Parents can teach children values up to a certain point, but they cannot be held responsible for having given birth to a psycho child. Parents don't make a child go psycho. If their child is a killer, there's a lot more wrong with the child than they can reasonably be expected to fix.

However, if the crime is of a nature where it's simply a matter of a complete lack of respect for other people, parents should be held accountable for not teaching their child that trashing other people's belongings or faces is not on.

Bottom line: if a teenager kills someone, there's a lot more wrong than just a lack of discipline in the home, and I doubt parents could be held responsible. However, if they left a gun lying around, for example, I'd say they were at least partly responsible because they failed to provide a safe environment for their children: they part-created the opportunity.

If a teenager trashes someone's house, parents should be made to pay for the damages. Their kid was up to no good. How they work things out financially with their teenager is not our problem: it is a parent's job to ensure their kid knows wrong from right and acts accordingly. Damages resulting from a failure to do so is wholly theirs to pay for.