Children and the Law Posts
Decades of research from the fields of criminology and adolescent brain science find that the decisions made in youth — even very unwise decisions — do not crystallize criminality. Instead, as young people age and mature they develop the capacity to make different choices.
Treating internal U.S. conflicts and international conflicts law the same, without distinguishing between them, has always puzzled non-U.S. lawyers and scholars. And nowhere is the question of whether domestic and international conflicts should be treated the same more pressing than in the current work of The American Law Institute.
A brief historical account may be helpful in understanding the uncertainty and the reasons why a Restatement of Children and the Law would be particularly useful in clarifying legal doctrine and in supporting emerging reform trends.
Part I examines changes associated with the Supreme Court’s requirement that juvenile courts provide delinquents some procedural safeguards. Part II examines the Get Tough Era and states’ emphases on youths’ adult-like culpability and adoption of punitive policies. Part III reviews the Supreme Court’s recent jurisprudence of youth, reaffirmation that children are different, and limits on harsh punishment for youths. It concludes with a reflection on the limits of juvenile justice reform to improve the life chances of young people.
Doctors and hospitals have begun to level a new charge — “medical child abuse” (MCA) — against parents who, they say, get unnecessary medical treatment for their kids. The fact that this treatment has been ordered by other doctors does not protect parents from these accusations.