Laws2014, 3(4), 759-779; doi:10.3390/laws3040759 - published 22 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: This article uses the debates surrounding the age of consent as a broad umbrella to question the continued usefulness of Queer Theory. The debates surrounding the age of consent illustrate that Queer Theory has not fulfilled its original promise and that it is not (and possibly never been), “fit for purpose”. Towards the end of 2013, the topic of lowering the age of consent in England and Wales was once again much in the news. This article suggests that much of that debate focused expressly or impliedly on the age of which men and boys have sexual intercourse (whether gay or straight), rather than when people have sexual intercourse. Queer Theory (originating from feminism), was intended to be a liberating phenomenon, but contrary to these hopes and intentions, Queer Theory evolved to become synonymous with white gay men, thus denying its origins and becoming distinctly anti-feminist. Those who argue for a reduction in the age of consent have used (whether knowingly or not) an approach which is consistent with this evolved version of Queer Theory. Consequently, the debate on the age of consent has ignored, or given insufficient attention to, the effect(s) a lowering of the age of consent will have on girls and women. This article, therefore, seeks to question, disrupt and unsettle, what Queer Theory has become, suggesting that, in several significant aspects, it fails to fully acknowledge patriarchy; render (lesbian) women visible; acknowledge and accommodate the lived experiences of women.
Laws2014, 3(4), 744-758; doi:10.3390/laws3040744 - published 21 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Youth incarcerated in the juvenile justice system are disproportionately exposed to traumas both in and outside of custody that are associated with poor social, behavioral, and developmental outcomes. The purpose of this paper is to describe one pathway through which trauma can impact a myriad of outcomes, including delinquency, violence, substance use, and other behaviors that are self-regulatory in nature. Relevant research from the developmental neuroscience, juvenile justice, and trauma literatures are drawn upon and synthesized to describe this pathway. Using a multi-disciplinary approach to understanding the role that brain development and neural activity play in the relationship between trauma and associated behavioral outcomes could serve to inform juvenile justice policy decisions and intervention practice. Such application could increase the effectiveness with which juvenile justice systems work with one of the most vulnerable and traumatized populations of youth in today’s society: those incarcerated in our juvenile justice system.
Laws2014, 3(4), 721-743; doi:10.3390/laws3040721 - published 17 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The paper illustrates how architecture can be used to show the contribution and the use of technology in the legal system. The models created enable the rapid identification of the stakeholders, their objectives, the technologies they use, and their goals. Such understanding helps decision makers ensure that the tools and processes enabled by information technology (IT) are aligned with the goals of the legal system. The preliminary framework developed in the paper shows the feasibility and the contribution of such models on a larger scale.
Laws2014, 3(4), 706-720; doi:10.3390/laws3040706 - published 15 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: The aim of the present study was threefold: to examine (1) the relation between both cognitive and affective empathy and prosocial behavior; (2) the relation between both cognitive and affective empathy and offending; and (3) the role of cognitive distortions in the relation between cognitive empathy, affective empathy and offending in a sample of adolescent girls with lower SES and education (N = 264). Results showed that both cognitive and affective empathy were positively related to prosocial behavior. Furthermore, cognitive empathy was positively related to offending, whereas affective empathy was not related to offending. Finally, no support was found for our hypothesis that cognitive distortions play a moderating role in the relation between empathy and offending.
Laws2014, 3(4), 693-705; doi:10.3390/laws3040693 - published 13 October 2014 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Over the last 40 years a number of scholars have called upon fellow criminologists to rethink the field’s priorities and methods, as well as the American criminal justice system and current punishment practices. Drawing on alternative criminologies, including constitutive and peacemaking criminologies, as well as the practice of reintegrative shaming, this paper presents a new model of criminal justice that combines aspects of adversarial, restorative, social, and transformative justice frameworks. The resulting “intersectional criminal justice” offers a holistic harm-reduction model that moves the focus of our criminal justice system away from “rough justice” and towards collective restorative healing and positive social change.
Abstract: Revolts in Tunisia and Egypt have led many observers to speak of the “first digital revolution” in the Arab world. Social media sites, such as Twitter and Facebook, are now recognised as the important tools that facilitated the “Jasmine Revolution”. In fact, the willingness of the Mubarak government to block all internet connection in Egypt has demonstrated the concern over the power of new technologies in facilitating political change. The tenacity of the social movements that are still on-going in the Arab world continues to demonstrate the important role that networked technologies—such as the internet, satellite channels and social networking sites—play in revolutions. The revolutions demonstrate an effective use of social media and other network technologies as an organisational tool, and as a means of asserting pressure on current rulers and future governments. Accordingly, this article seeks to expose freedom of expression as a fundamental democratic principle and the internet network as a vehicle driving the demonstrations in the Arab countries of Tunisia and Egypt.