Why People Commit Crime? Essay

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There are many theories that attempt to explain crime; some focus on why people commit crime, others focus on why people do not commit crime. A major flaw with the existing criminological theories is the fact that every theory attempts to explain a large number of criminal acts. In fact, crime cannot be explained by one theory alone; it is the combination of several theories and ideas that explains why crime exists, and these theories cannot be applied to all crime as a whole; rather, they are best used when applied to certain crimes in combination with certain types of offenders. The idea that crime only exists because there is an excess of ideas that are more favorable toward law violation than not dates back to Sutherland’s differential association theory (Sutherland, 1947). Essentially, if ideas unfavorable toward law lead to crime, then the laws themselves are what causes crime; therefore, processing through the system and contact with law enforcement officials leads to more crime. One concept that criminological theories do not greatly expand upon is the idea that the criminal justice system and law enforcement not only perpetuate but directly cause crime, and that concept is a major contributor toward criminal activity. The idea of law, in regards to creation and enforcement, causes crime as well. The only way to successfully explain why crime occurs is to first divide crimes into certain categories, and then categorize the types of people who commit those crimes.

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