Reforming Juvenile Justice: A Call for Uniformity

In "Adult Criminal Activities, Grownup Time," released in the Washington Post on March 29, 1998, Linda J. Collier argues about the juvenile laws and her principal argument shows that children should serve the same time as adults when they dedicate adult crimes. Collier provides some stats and examples (Jonesboro shooting, Daily City shooting, and her experience with a specific lady) that support her position concerning the details of the article. The diversity of laws amongst states made the situation much harder because they can not create a particular service for the problem.

According to Collier, the solution is to produce the same set of rules for every single state, in order to punish the juvenile who devotes adult criminal activities. However, the lack of participation of the federal government or Congress develops an environment of disparity in state laws that control the decision of prosecution of young society. Collier's article is not a good example of an essay that integrates all three appeals.

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The essay contains interest logos, but struggles with absence of trusted information of the subject and does not provides a good quantity of proof that clearly supports her reasons. Also, the refutation of different opinions is uncertain along the essay, and does not seem made properly. Nevertheless, Collier's ability to develop commonalities, usage sensory language and her interest pathos determines the excellent effectiveness of the argument. The article seems to contain a big amount of information persuading the reader to support the more extreme and rigorous punishment for juveniles dedicating adult crimes.

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However, Collier's total argument appears weak due to the absence of rational, statistical, and helpful realities making it sound more like a grumble instead of an argument. She does not supplies statistical facts to support a change in the juvenile justice system, on the other hand, she simply encourages to alter the set of rules without any reliable or factual assistance. In order to support her claim Collier should provide strong truths, such as, number of juveniles associated with murders and variety of violent activities connected to juvenile's people.

For example, the number of murders done by juveniles in 2003 was 783, however statistics show that the number of murders done by juveniles reached over 1.100 by 2007. In her argument, Collier never gives a clear and evident example of how only extending and implying harsher and more severe consequences will help reduce juvenile crime rates. For instance, there is no reliable measure of improvement that shows that Collier’s solution will decreased the rate of juvenile crimes. Logically, a more severe punishment will indeed frighten and make a juvenile think twice before committing a crime, although it wont guarantee a complete solution for the problem. In the sense of ethos, Collier’s essay comes off as a cold and dry argument due to her strict point of view exhibiting any sort of emotion or sympathy towards the juvenile’s perspective. It is important to keep in mind that kids will be kids regardless of the matter, therefore people tend to forget that they are still in the process of growing up and becoming responsible adults.

On behalf of that, kids are vulnerable to make mistakes and careless choices without thinking about the consequences. Collier flat out just wants to extend and intensify the judicial punishment, without any concerns regarding the juvenile’s background, family situation, or any other important factor that relates or leads to a juvenile misbehavior in the first place. Even thought it may sound reasonable to intensify the juvenile justice system, there are specific situations that should be evaluated before considering such changes. Such as, being at the wrong place and at the wrong time, facing problems through desperate matters, and mental problems that could lead to a tragic ending for a kid. Collier does not point out or takes under considerations this other subliminal and contributing factors of various kinds that can play an important role in a young person’s life, making her appeal to ethos vulnerable along the argument.

On the contrary, Collier’s appeal to pathos determines her side and stand point of the issue for sure. Clearly, she wants to lower juvenile crime rates through modifying and extending the juvenile justice system. Considering Collier’s plan as a possible solution for the present issue, the creation of common ground is stabled due to the fact that we all want a more safe and developed society for the future. Collier argues in such a way that she makes it seem as it is a perfect world with simple solutions to serious problems. That’s not always the case. Life is more hypothetical than a simple extension of punishments and consequences. On account of what was mentioned before, kids will always be kids and if they do not consider consequences, they still wont consider what Colliers suggest. As a conclusion, Collier’s overall argument it is good.

The essay presents many weaknesses related with the appeal to logos and ethos, however her facility to establish common ground helps the confident of the article. Although, ethos and logos does not provide support, the appeal to pathos along the essay is a major strength. Collier should add more reliable information, facts, and statistics in order to make a stronger argument and support all the information contained in it. Coming up with respectful and clear refutations to other opinions will create a bigger level of respect between the writer and the readers, resulting in an excellent and complete argument about the juvenile crime.

Work Cited
Collier, Linda J. “Adult Crime, Adult Time.” The Washington Post Company, Page C01. Web. Sunday, March 29, 1998.

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Reforming Juvenile Justice: A Call for Uniformity. (2017, May 21). Retrieved from

Reforming Juvenile Justice: A Call for Uniformity
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