Young people who commit serious crimes should be punished in the same way as adults. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Crimes can be detestable, while minor offenders and their crimes are from time to time treated with leniency. Thus, some argue that laws should not discriminate, and equally punish minor criminals—an opinion that this essay is against.
To begin with, minors are yet to approach their maturity, and their crimes, albeit serious, should be punished with the consideration of their young age. Internationally speaking, countries might define the start of adulthood differently—18 being the most common—but they commonly believe that there is a distinction between minor crimes and adult crimes. Minors are likely to be given a better chance for rehabilitation when they commit crimes because of their inexperience of life and possibly better life prospects. In that case, milder punishments are inflicted on juvenile delinquents: lesser sentencing and relatively less harsh correction facilities are introduced in their cases.
Moreover, considering the correction process, minor offenders should not be punished equally as adult criminals. Despite the above-mentioned arguments that are in young offenders’ defense, crimes, especially felonies by minors, deserve heavy punishment to deter crimes and reduce the harm of those crimes to the society. However, sending minors to adult prison might entail unexpectedly negative results. First, minors are naturally closer to more sophisticated criminals and crimes, which aggravate juvenile delinquency. Second, when in adult correctional facilities, young criminals might be threatened by assaults by adult prisoners, mostly sexually, which is nowhere closer to the purpose of rehabilitation.
In sum, law breakers, be they minors or not, should be punished for their wrongdoings, but lesser sentences and special correctional facilities might be more reasonable and helpful.