SOC 305 All Discussions (WK 1 – WK 5)



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WEEK 1

DQ 1 -Crime and Society:

 

After viewing the video, Crime and Deviance: A Social Inquiry, please address each of the following questions:

  1. Is crime normal in a society?
  2. What is the purpose of crime and punishment?
  3. How much crime is “enough,” and how would this be measured?
  4. How is crime defined?
  5. What problems are defined as worthy of social control?
  6. What is the influence of the media?

 

DQ 2: This discussion focuses on topics addressed in several chapters of your text – the death penalty and discrimination. Although first discussed in Chapter 2, the death penalty is also discussed in Chapter 4. Rather than thinking in rigid terms about reading assignments, please use your textbook as a resource. After reading the text and watching the video, Injustice for Blacks in Alabama, respond to each of the following questions:

  1. What do you think best explains high incarceration rates for Blacks compared to their percent of the general population?
  2. What do you think explains high incarceration rates for Blacks on death row?
  3. Is institutionalized racism to blame for these disparate rates? Please explain.
  4. Are genuinely high rates of Black crime to blame? Why or why not?
  5. What other factors explain the high incarceration rates for Black men?
  6. How can this problem be solved?

 

 

WEEK 2

DQ 1- After listening to the interview with Stephen B. Bright, The quality of a legal defense: Does it matter if you’re rich or poor?, please respond to the following:

  1. How does geographic location play a role in the quality of representation provided by the public defender?
  2. How does the overburdened public defense system in many areas contribute to issues of wrongful conviction?
  3. Contrast the legal representation described by Bright to the level of representation available to white-collar, corporate, and environmental crimes.
  4. This discussion highlights two issues – wrongful conviction and the overburdened public defender system. How can these problems be solved?

 

DQ 2 – After reading this week’s required text, please respond to the following:

  1. In your opinion, what have been among the main outcomes of the War on Drugs?
  2. How close has it come to its original goals of reducing drug use and punishing drug suppliers?
  3. How has this “war” impacted African-American males?
  4. How has this “war” impacted immigration policy?
  5. How will this “war” end?

 

 

WEEK 3

DQ 1- Determining whether to try a child in the juvenile or the criminal justice system will have an impact on every step of his or her experience. Although the exact laws and practices of the systems vary from state to state, broad underlying beliefs differentiate the two systems. While the juvenile system is often thought to be more lenient in its punishments, there are often stricter regulations throughout the process. In the juvenile system a child may not have a right to a jury trial or bail. Juvenile records are not open to public access like criminal records and parole is very different between the two systems. When the child in question is considered a child, the courts act as more of a parent attempting to punish but also protect.

Differences between juvenile and adult criminal justice systems exist at every step of the way. In the website Four Kids, Four Crimes, follow four cases and examine how and why two defendants were tried as juveniles and two were tried as adults. After reading all four case stories, answer the following questions:

  1. Would you try Christian Fernandez, from the beginning of Chapter 5 of your text, in adult court or juvenile court?
  2. What criteria did you use in making your decision?
  3. How did you apply those criteria to the case of Christian Fernandez?

 

 

DQ 2 – Women’s relationships in prison commonly fulfil an emotional need. They are different from men’s sexual relationships in prison in that they are less likely to involve coercion or be motivated by power and status grabs. In addition to romantic relationships, female inmates are also likely to form prison families with roles that mimic mothers, sisters, and even grandmothers. For many inmates, their prison family is the first positive female role modelling they have encountered.

In the article, Inside a maximum security women’s prison, reporter Diane Sawyer spent a day and a night inside a prison to explore the relationships of female prisoners, particularly as they pertain to sex. In addition, read the report, Managing sexual relationships in a female prison, that takes a deeper look at the culture from the perspective of the guards of Bandy up Women’s Prison in Washington.

  1. Should guards allow or encourage familial and/or sexual relationships in prison? What are the pros and cons?
  2. Why do you think women who are straight in the community choose to enter into homosexual relationships in prison?
  3. How might prison families help women cope with incarceration?

 

 

WEEK 4

SOC 305 Week 4 DQ’s

 

DQ 1- After reading the articles, Are honor killings simply domestic violence? and ‘Honour’ crimes are domestic abuse, plain and simple, please respond to each of the following questions:

  1. Are honor killings simply domestic violence?
  2. What similarities do honor killings have with other forms of interpersonal crime? What differences do they exhibit?
  3. In your opinion, what is the best way for the criminal justice system to treat and respond to honor killings?

 

DQ 2- Please view the video, Inside USA – Rise of hate, Part 1, or read the article, Number of U.S. hate groups is rising, report says, in preparation for this discussion.

Were you aware of the number and range of recognized hate groups in these states? This video helps us learn about hate groups in the United States. In addition, please visit the Teaching Tolerance website and view the Hate Map. Please review the maps for the state in which you live, or a state of your choice. Respond to each of the following questions:

  1. Were you aware of the number and range of recognized hate groups in these states?
  2. Why would individuals make the decision to associate with these groups?
  3. As we see, every one of us is a target in one way or another. How does this targeting turn to hate crime?
  4. How has the definition and prosecution of hate crimes evolved?

 

 

 

WEEK 5

DQ 1–As we learn in the readings, media reports of school crime tend to create misconceptions of a danger that is actually quite small for the overwhelming majority of school users. In fact, given the number of students, teachers, and other personnel in schools on any given day, it is quite astounding how few violent episodes there are. To track violence in schools, read the US Department of Justice and US Department of Education report, Indicators of School Crime and Safety: 2011. After reading the report, please address each of the following:

  1. Refer to a specific statistic found on the site, with proper citation. Tell us why this statistic surprised you, confirmed your belief, etc.
  2. In 81% of violent, targeted school attacks, at least one person knew someone was conceiving of or planning an attack. In most cases no one came forward with this information. Why do you think this is?
  3. What are some significant differences between on-campus crime and crime in the general population?
  4. Discuss the challenged inherent in preventing school and workplace violence.

 

DQ2–After reading the two articles addressing privatization, Arizona’s private prisons: A bad bargain and The case for privatizing California’s prisons, respond to each of the following questions:

  1. In your opinion, what groups of people benefit most when the prison system is capitalized? What groups or people benefit least?
  2. In your informed opinion, are private prisons a bargain? Why or why not? Has the general public reached the same conclusion? Why or why not?
  3. Has your opinion about private prisons changed as a result of this research?
  4. What problems come with privatizing traditional government services like incarceration, military work, or policing? What benefits?
  5. What do for-profit prisons say about society’s expectations of incarceration and criminal activity? What do they say about society’s opinion of inmates?

Your initial post should be at least 250 words in length. Support your claims with examples from the required material(s) and/or other scholarly resources, and properly cite any references. Respond to at least two of your classmates’ posts by Day 7.

 



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