In the cases of juveniles that have committed major crimes such as murder, the children, pre-teens, or teenagers have been treated as children rather than adults. Which is the main problem I want to reveal to parents that have “perfect little angels” for children. I am a 17 year-old highschooler who wants to be heard because I feel like teenagers are either never considered adults and are ignored in most discussions. My main message is that juveniles should be charged as adults in cases such as murder and other serious crimes, and be held accountable for malicous intent, because they are still aware of the crimes they commit despite still developing as young adults. They are no longer innocent children, as much as the parents of juveniles will try to convince you.
Teeneagers are sometimes considered confused or emotionally unstable; but people can sometimes think of them as still kids, when this can be far from the truth. Some organizations or people that protect these juveniles, such as Professor Stephen Morse who protects teen killers , say that they are still children and don’t have the mental capacity to understand the size of the crime they have committed. I think Jennifer Jenkins said it best in her documentary “On Punishment and Teen Killers,” that “many Juvenile Life without Parole (JLWOP) offenders are repeat violent offenders…” which to me says that teen killers are set free due to age just to kill again. Two families could become devastated when a teen or child decides to kill a person.
The brains of teenagers are still underdeveloped, but teenagers are still capable of knowing their surroundings and predicting the impact of their actions. What is convincing is how David Dobbs says from his article “Beautiful Brains” in reference to a brain test from the University of Pittsburgh,
"[By] age 15 they can score as well as adults if they’re motivated, resisting temptation about 70 to 80 percent of the time. What Luna found most interesting, however, was not those scores. It was the brain scans she took while people took that monitor performance, spot errors, plan, and stay focused–areas the adults seemed to bring online automatically. This let the adults use a variety of brain resources and better resist temptation, while the teens used those areas less often and more readily gave in to the impulse to look at the flickering light–just as they’re more likely to look away from the road to read text message."
This quote shows that teens can perform on par or better against adults with brain tests, but can give in to impulses during said test. Overall, teens can be as smart as adults and can analyze at an adult level.
Teens should be charged as adults for major crimes because they have a similar brain capacity of an adult. So now that I have shown you that teens have done terrible crimes and have been repeat offenders and have the mental capacity to know the consequences of their actions according to the brain test of the University of Pittsburgh. I can give an alternative to the problem. The best way to deal with these sorts of things is to stop the problem before it starts by keeping regular meeting with a counselor or therapist to check their mental state to prevent things like school shootings and JLWOP. I hope I have made my point clear. Thank you for your time.