Test your knowledge of this chapter’s material by determining whether the following statements are true or false. Be sure to compare your answers with the answers on page 329.
1. Retribution was a popular justification for juvenile punishment until the invention of adolescence.
2. Teens have the same cognitive and reasoning abilities as adults.
3. The concept of restoration is that punishment should ideally be the least restrictive form necessary and that it should be used to bring some sort of healing or closure to the people affected by an act of delinquency or harm.
4. When reformers started the first juvenile court, they used the same terms and concepts for the process as adult court, in order to show that juveniles were equal to adults in their eyes.
5. During the due process revolution of the 1960s, youth were given the right to a trial by jury in juvenile court proceedings.
6. The last three decades of the 20th century were characterized by measures to get tough on delinquency by harshly punishing youth.
7. The predictions of a “superpredator” explosion contributed to the panic over young men of color and their increased placement in institutions.
8. A number of U.S. Supreme Court cases in the 2000s have alluded to the need to protect youth from cruel and unusual punishment, and the Court has considered the ongoing development of the teenage brain in these decisions.
1. Listen to either the arguments or the decision of the court in the Graham v. Florida case (available online from The Oyez Project at IIT Chicago-Kent College of Law, 2013) to better understand the case EJI presented to the Supreme Court. What did you learn from listening to the case?
2. Quickly research Joe Sullivan’s case on the Internet. What has happened to Joe Sullivan since Graham v. Florida was decided?
Sources: Equal Justice Initiative. (2007). Cruel and unusual: Sentencing 13- and 14- year-old children to die in prison. Retrieved from http://eji.org/childrenprison/deathinprison; Equal Justice Initiative. (2012a). Children in adult prison. Retrieved from http://www.eji.org/childrenprison ; Equal Justice Initiative. (2012b). Graham v. Florida. (2013, May). The Oyez Project at IIT
Chicago-Kent College of Law. Retrieved from http://oyez.com/cases/2000 2009/2009/2009_08_7412
We can do it today.
1. The author of the news article drew from existing research to make the point that racism is linked to the disproportionate minority confinement of youth of Native Hawaiian, Filipino, and Samoan background in Hawaii. How do you think this root issue should be addressed? Why?
Source: Blair, C. (2012). Why so many Hawaiian, Samoan and Filipino youth in justice system? Honolulu Civil Beat, Oct. 24. Retrieved from http://www.civilbeat.org/2012/10/17448-why-so-many-hawaiian-samoan-and-filipino-youth-in-justice-system/
1. Choose a Supreme Court case and study the resources related to it on the Oyez website. What did you learn from the experience?
Sources: Illinois Institute of Technology Chicago-Kent College of Law. (2016). Oyez. Retrieved from www.oyez.org; Mauro, T. (2016). ‘Oyez Project’ new home will keep Supreme Court audio free to public. The National Law Journal, May 25. Retrieved from http://www.nationallawjournal.com/id=1202758582402/Oyez-Project-New-Home-Will-Keep-Supreme-Court-Audio-Free-toPublic?slreturn=20160515212147
1. After reading the above material about brain development, can you summarize what takes place in the brain of a young person over time?
2. Did you realize that your own brain was developing well into your early 20s? Does that change the way you might behave in the future?
3. If you have passed that stage of development, think back to how this information may have changed the way you lived (e.g., what substances you put into your body) had you known about it before then.
Sources: Dobbs, D. (2011). Beautiful brains. National Geographic, 4, 1–8. Retrieved from http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2011/10/teenage-brains/dobbs-text; Steinberg, L. (2010). A behavioral scientist looks at the science of adolescent brain development. Brain and Cognition, 72, 160–164.
1. Consider the various justifications for punishment. Which do you think serve as the strongest basis for juvenile justice, and why? Do you think having different juvenile and adult justice systems serves the justification you have picked? Why or why not?
2. The myth of the superpredator fueled the punitive mood of the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s. Can you see a similar myth or scare today that may be driving public concerns about delinquency? If so, explain what it is and how you see it operating in your community or in the world at large.
3. The scientific research on brain development is compelling evidence that the teenage (and young adult) brain is in a state of flux and is not capable of the same degree of rationality as the adult brain. Do you understand why the Supreme Court decided to consider that research in its legal cases related to juveniles in the 2000s?
Chapter Pretest Answers