Criminal justice reform
Criminal justice reform
Questions 1 (a) – Criminal justice reform
The documentary on Adnan Syed was created by Amy Berg, and it comprises four-part series on the murder and disappearance of Hae Min Lee and the conviction of Adnan Syed. The case is filled with a lot of misdeeds by the police. Contentious issues such as cultural conflict and forbidden love for the two immigrants. Hae Min Lee was a Korean immigrant while Adnan was a Muslim immigrant from Pakistan. The criminal justice system was riddled with different issues such as racial and class differentiation and hostility towards races, explaining the various flaws in the criminal and legal systems.
Firstly, the criminal justice system was unfair as illustrated by police misconduct and prosecution errors. The police conduct was flawed, and this is evident through forced confessions and the intimidation of potential witnesses. For example, a witness, Asia Mcclain who places Adnan at the library at the time of murder expresses her distrust in the Baltimore police, and she recounts police threats and intimidation. She asserts that she was afraid of the police and that at one point the officers have followed her, pulled, and harassed her (“Adnan Syed | The Case | Part 2 of 4 | 2018 | HD” min 19). This is gross misconduct on the police, and it is meant to bury possible leads and information on Adnan’s innocence.
The reliance on false evidence reveals evidence of the prosecutor’s misconduct. For example, the failure to conduct a proper DNA and proper forensics is a failure by the prosecution. The reliance on phone towers and incoming cell traffic was misleading, thus should not be part of the conclusive evidence in the trial. Also, the prosecution failed in the cross-examination of witnesses to determine their integrity and the usability of the information. Additionally, Wilds’ testimony was unreliable since the witness changed the account several times. The statement indicated substantial coaching, and this shows police interference in the case.
Similarly, the problem of race and social classes is evident in the case, which determines its direction. Adnan is a victim of his race, origin, and status in society. He is an immigrant and Muslim, and in one of the testimonies, the witness cites that Adnan killed Hae Min Lee as an act of revenge, which is allowed in his religion. Thus, racism narratives and bias in judgment define the pervasion of justice for Adnan.
Questions 1 (b) – Reproductive Policy
The documentary No Mas Bebes translates to No More Babies, and it tells a story of the forced sterilization of immigrant women in the United States. The Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center led the sterilization project, and it targeted Mexican women. The act was oppressive since it focused the Mexican productive health and it brought about negative implications to the family and individual lives. The forced sterilization was a legal issue as it indicated the differential targeting of women of color.
The policy was racially biased as indicated in the Mexican defendants who sought reprieve from the law. The case, Madrigal v. Quilligan was centered on reproductive justice and the misleading information offered by the hospital and healthcare professionals to the unsuspecting victims. The Mexican women sought prosecution against the county doctors, the state, and the U.S. government following unauthorized sterilization while giving birth at Los Angeles County-USC Medical Center. The legal violation, in this case, was the force and the manipulation into signing forms. The patients signed forms written in English; thus they did not get proper translation or information on the form’s content.
The sterilization policy was biased and unjust for immigrant women. It was differential in the sense that it is designed to curb the common stereotype that Mexican women were fertile, as well as the belief that they were diseased and their offspring were of inferior quality. Moreover, the sterilization policy was racially biased, and it sought to undermine the traditional ideologies of large Mexican families. The sterilization affected women and in different ways. For example, the sterilized women underwent trauma, shame and often some exhibited suicidal thoughts. Moreover, the sterilization threatened family life and relations in the family. Additionally, Dolores Madrigalexperienced a strained relationship with her husband (“No Más Bebés” Documentary”). The tense relations escalated to physical and emotional violence and thus the sterilization policy affected family lives and that of the victims.
Question 2 – Health Policy
Drug addiction is the development of chronic and compulsive behaviors whereby the victims uncontrollably seek to abuse drugs, often leading to adverse effects on their physical, emotional, and mental health. Addiction is a behavioral health issue since the individual tends to develop a dependency on a specific substance, which is attained through continued behavior (Ali et al. 2). As a behavioral issue, addiction influences an individual’s behavior, choices, and well-being. It is also a behavioral concern since an own conscious mind controls it and thus the failure to resist the drug urges leads to addictions (Gruenewald et al. 736). Addiction is a compulsive behavior disorder which influences the life and health of an individual, and the reversal of the dysfunction requires repetitive behavioral choices.
The socio-ecological model demonstrates the multiplicity of risk factors and their contribution to addictive tendencies among different individuals in society. The etiology of addiction based on the socio-ecological model identifies various risk factors such as family influences, peer pressure, social problems, which are contributors to addictive behaviors. The contextual lens explains the familial interaction familiar factors, which pose potential risks and protective roles in addiction (Jadidi and Nakhaee 1). For example, the lack of family and parental involvement and guidance can affect the quality of relationships, causing addiction in children. Also, the family disruptions, abuse, and isolation can contribute to drug abuse and addiction as a form of solace. The family protective factors lead to the development of positive and mutual attachment between parents and children. Thus, the family can contribute to addiction as well as protect an individual from addictive behaviors.
Moreover, the social and cultural environment is contingent on the socio-ecological model since the environment poses several risks to addictive behaviors. For example, the ecology or environment can increase the chances of access to drugs. Also, the existing patterns in drug use within a neighborhood can pose a risk to addiction. The socio-economic status, drug policies, and penalties influence the risk level of drug addiction (Richardson et al. 128). On the other hand, the protective factor in the social and cultural environment is the pride exhibited by individuals from the shared background.
The individual is crucial in the determination of addictive tendencies. The distinctive characteristics such as age, race, income, personality, family background determine their risk and the possibility to incline to drug addiction. In this case, personal experiences can be used to determine the direction an individual takes with regards to different challenges. The relational aspects dictate the social circles, peer associations, and their influences on drug use and addiction. Most adolescents are victims of peer pressure, which in turn leads to addiction (Richardson et al. 128). Also, relational aspects determine family and societal relationships and how they shape an individual ability to take up drug use.
Moreover, neighbor characteristics determine the prevalence of drug addiction. For example, poor neighborhoods are likely to harbor drug due to social despair and other factors. Communities determine the availability and ease of access to drugs. Lastly, the culture of a society or group of people determines the creation of climate or ecology which encourages or discourages drug use. Thus, the societal and cultural norms of a community are applied to promote or eliminate drug use. Cultural factors such as economic inequalities, racial inequalities, and criminalization of certain groups encourage drug use and addiction among individual races and groups in society.
There is a need to implement poverty alleviation policies and community empowerment for low-income families, groups and neighborhoods in the society. The system is meant to eliminate the high levels of social and economic disparities in society. Also, it is intended to remove the social despair which leads individuals to escapism choices such as drug use. In most cases, poor people use drugs and stick to addiction for the getaway effect.
Question 3 – Violence, Victimization, and Abuse
Adverse child experiences define the prevalence of stressful and traumatic events in the lives of children, leading to different disorders such as depression and substance abuse among others. The ACEs have negative and long term implications on the physical, mental, and psychological health of children. Examples of ACEs in children lives include domestic violence and family dysfunctions, which alter their emotional state. ACEs disproportionately impact the children of color since they are targets of massive inequalities in society. Despite their statistics remaining uncaptured, children of color have the worst traumatic experiences especially with regards to drug abuse, violence, and other ACEs in the community. The current analyses fail to situate children of color because adults were the representative population. Moreover, the use of parents as a national representative of data fails to capture the childhood experiences. The children and parents of color are targets of social and racial discrimination; thus the statistics and analyses are biased (Sacks et al. 1).
Incarceration of African American youth has increased since the year 1980, as evidenced by the increased rate of incarceration of African American youths into the prison system. Statistics indicate that the African American population is five times that of the white counterparts (Nellis par 1). These ACEs affects the youth of color who are often imprisoned; they are targets of police brutality and negative depictions by the media. Besides, incarceration disproportionately impacts the youth of color by decreasing their chances at employment, social stigma, family separation, and disruption and other adverse impacts at individual and communal levels.
Domestic violence is one of the dominant forms of violence among married people or those in a relationship. This form of abuse is prevalent in black, Hispanic and other colored groups as compared to the white population. In the United States, children from minority races and poor or low-income families experience violence at home, public places, neighborhoods, and schools (Slopen, and et al. 47). The disproportionate exposure to violence impacts the youth of color in different ways. For example, early exposure leads to the development of psychological issues and trauma, which in turn affects their behavioral tendencies. Also, the youth tends to develop a response to violence, which takes the form of increased aggression and inclination towards violence (Jipguep and Sanders-Phillips 379). Thus, violence begets more violence for the youth of color given their social and cultural exposure to violence.
Mental health disorders are a common health problem for minority races in the United States. They include depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideations among other symptoms. The prevalence of mental health disorders among the people of color is high as compared to the white population (Alegría et al. 51). Racism and social disparities increase the incidence of mental health problems, which impact on the youth of color as evidenced through the multiplicity of psychological distress and feelings of hopelessness in society.
Incarceration, domestic violence, and mental health issues are a common form of adversity in the black community. The ACEs are associated with the black community due to the history of racism, inequalities, and injustices that face the African American population. As such, the black community has been targets of mass incarceration and other injustices from the criminal justice system. Also, the ACEs are co-occurring and shared in the black community due to economic and social disparities, which expose them to poverty and other social and economic problems (Sacks et al. 7). Thus, ACEs are predominant in almost all minority groups, and they have adverse effects on the population.
ACEs have negative implications for the society, and thus the development of different strategies is crucial in reducing or eliminating the effects of adversity in children of color. Therefore, the development of Trauma-informed and integrated policies are essential for individual and community development. These policies help in addressing the sources of trauma and intervention strategies. Also, the social welfare policies target human welfare such as housing, a shelter for victims of domestic violence (Center for Youth Wellness 5). Moreover, health policies are crucial in addressing ACEs since they contribute to the physical, psychological, and mental health of the affected children. The aspect of health is essential in understanding behavioral issues and problems and the determination of proper intervention strategies (Alegría et al. 54). For example, health policies determine medical interventions or psychological interventions for children with mental health issues.
Question 4: Statement Analysis
I am not a victim, but I have been victimized. This is a statement illustrating the various issues or elements that have been used to victimize people in society. The statement applies to the black community who are targets of different adversities and inequalities in society. Victimization is illustrated in the societal perception and the self-pity comes with the title victim. Victimization brings about stigma, and thus the application of trauma and stigma policies helps victims overcome the odds.
Men who are on active duty and African American men who are not on active duty have a similar prevalence to internalizing disorders. Internalizing disorders is the ability to keep problems or issues to oneself. Men on active duty prevalence to internalizing of matters are derived from professional duty while the tendency to internalize among African American men is due to the societal demands and suppressions. Often, internalizing problems leads to mental health problems as illustrated in PTSD for men in active duty and social disorders for African American men.
Inequality is the principle course of disparity in different domains. Inequality is a common issue in society. Different fields such as economic, social, cultural fields demonstrate inequities, bringing about divisions in the society. A relevant policy applicable in variation is the social welfare guidelines that promote the overall well-being in society.
Youth violence is a public health issue. Youth violence is a public health issue since it poses severe risks to the health of an individual and society. Violence has harmful effects on child development, and it also affects the equilibrium of the community. It is also a health issue since it leads to the death of many youths and even threatens the lives of other people in society (Tibbs et al. 641). The policy applicable for this health issue is community engagement policies, which incorporate community and health care organizations to prevent and manage the effects of violence.
Standardized test scores reproduce inequality in the US. Standardized testing is an education requirement by the American educational system. The system is racially biased, and often it brings about the disparities in the society by the evaluation of the test scores. The educational policies are applicable in changing the use of test scores in the determination of a student’s cognitive abilities and learning (Grodsky et al. 385).
Social policy is health policy. Social systems focus on the overall well-being of society. The social policies seek to address the general inequalities, and thus health policies are part and parcel of social policies, and they are aimed at bridge the gap between health and income in the society (Hamad par 1).
Racial discrimination mediates the relationship between environment and poor health. The race is a cause of discrimination and inequalities in society; it brings about differential treatment for individuals in different social institutions. In healthcare institutions, it accounts for the disparities in access and quality of healthcare in society. Environmental factors play a role in differential treatment since individuals from low-income neighborhoods are less than standards treatment (Assari et al. 1). The adoption of universal health policies helps bridge the gap between social environments and healthcare delivery.
Gender is a social determinant of health. Gender is a social determinant of health, as illustrated from the existing inequalities between genders. For example, women health is affected by social and gender disparities, and this poses health risks to women. Also, the existence of gender norms and roles helps in the construction of identities based on gender differences. The socially constructed characters and narratives determine women health limit access to healthcare. Also, gender is used to exert control over healthcare resources and other aspects of access (Phillips 11).
Too affluent to know right from wrong. The statement is discriminative in its approach to society’s moral code. Too wealthy to know right and wrong describes the position of the economically endowed in stating their opinion in determining the moral law.
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