Essay Writing Topics for High School and College Students
The few years in life that bridge the gulf between childhood and maturity is known as adolescence. The problems of this impressionable period of development and social adjustment are many and varied. The importance of adolescence cannot be over emphasized as this is the time in the life of an individual which makes or mars the future.
The problems of delinquency
For the majority of children this transition period though beset with minor difficulties passes off fairly smoothly and the child emerges into a happy rational and useful member of society. But unfortunately we now and then come across young boys and girls who have committed such offences against the law of the country which in an adult would have been punishable by penal servitude. Such young people are called delinquents.
Delinquency is no doubt one of the major problems that confront modern society and great deal of thought and careful handling is required to tackle the problems. But why do these deviations from the normal occur? The causes must be made clear before we can hope to find remedies.
Crime is not assignable to any single universal source as it springs from a wide variety of converging influences. The nature of these subversive factors and of their varying combinations differ greatly from individual to individual. Juvenile offenders are far from constituting a homogeneous class.
A human being is a product of heredity and environment and the relative importance of these two factors in the problem of causation of crime is fundamental and important. To attribute crime in general either to a predominantly hereditary or predominantly origin is impossible. In the long run both seem to be of equal weight. Heredity appears to operate not directly through transmission of a criminal disposition as such but rather indirectly through constitutional conditions. Heredity factors are irremediable and nothing can uproot inherited tendencies. But they can be modified and deficiencies may be supplemented by positive training and teaching. On the other hand influences that reside in the environment are not immutable. Of the latter conditions those obtained outside the home are far less important than those obtained within it and within the home material conditions are far less important than moral conditions.
A high percentage of delinquents are victims of emotionally disturbed home situations. Children need a foundation of love and stability in their livers for a child brought up in an atmosphere of strife and hostility has irremediable effects on its character. This kind of situation too common in modern life is far more pernicious in its influence on the child's development than simple squalor dirt poor housing and malnutrition provided the child is sure of parental love.
Influence coming from outside the homes can be of many different kinds. School plays a most important part in the life of an adolescent. A school consisting of an interesting curriculum with provision for individual attention and with sympathetic teachers having a sound knowledge of child psychology can do much to prevent juvenile delinquency. Free compulsory schooling for children will remove many of the urchins that we find loitering and mischief making in streets and lanes thus giving them less chance of getting into serious trouble.
Parents and guardians should always keep an eye on the companions children have specially in the impressionable age of adolescence as this is the age of gregarious instinct when boys and girls love to be in groups and are tremendously influenced by friends and leaders.
Young boys and girls need plenty of amusements to occupy their leisure hours. While selected forms of recreation can do a world of good there is no end to the harm done if the amusement be of questionable taste. A fairly cheap and widespread form of entertainment of modern days is the cinema and it has a most significant influence in the life of an adolescent. But these influences cannot be said to be exclusive good or exclusively bad. Any motion picture presents in dramatic form a large collection of ideas each adolescent selecting for himself what he wants to learn just as he does from any other experience in life. Adolescents need problems to think and talk about and ideas presented to them through this medium receive attention and discussion. But because of this very reason of arousing effect and the permanence of emotional reactions instigated by moving pictures there should be better supervision than there is at present. Adolescents should be presented with undesirable ideas. The child with no background of experience by which to correct the picture frames a notion altogether distorted of social life and manners. Simply to attach a negative to an alluring thoughts is not to arrest its tendency to action far better is it that motions and images of voice should never be place before his eyes at all. Besides the cinema provides a standing temptation to steal money for admittance if not provided with it otherwise.
Uncensored book and cinema literature are mentally harmful for children. The increasing popularity of these books is positively alarming.
The treatment and prevention of delinquency are based on some broad and general principles. Delinquent tendencies should be dealt with at the earliest stage. The delinquent must be approached individually as a unique human being with his or her particular constitution, difficulties and problems. The keynote of modern educational thought is individuality and elf realization is to be brought about by adjustment and readjustment for each particular child. Remedies should be adapted not to the nature of the offence but to the nature of the factors provoking it.
Society must aim at prevention as well as cure. Sustained investigation into all the problems of childhood is necessary among other needs if delinquency in the young is to be not merely cured as it arises but diverted forestalled and so far as possible wiped out.
We should always remember that moral perfection is not obtained as a birthright but it is a goal to be aimed at and if possible acquired.