Scared Straight

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7 pages in length. Battling the criminal element has been an ongoing and increasingly difficult objective since man's first presence was recorded. Deviant behavior in human beings is hard-wired into the species' psyche; when coupled with such additional elements as negative environmental influence, the prevalence for criminal behavior accounts for significant occurrence even in a civilized society. To catch such behavior at the earliest point and restructure the thinking process of a young perpetrator is the fundamental approach of such shock programs as Scared Straight, a high-profile tertiary approach to prevention that engages violent youth in brief encounters with inmates who describe "the brutality of prison life or short-term incarceration in prisons or jails" (The Department of Health and Human Services, 2001) with the expectation of shocking - and thereby deterring - adolescents from committing crimes. While a program such as this has all the markings of a successful outcome and lower recidivism rates, statistics have illustrated how such hard-core approaches may actually increase criminal behavior instead of prevent it. Bibliography lists 6 sources.