During colonization, a dehumanizing process of Indigenous people began; the brutal introduction of the new societal norms was accomplished by invading, displacing many families, murder, and rape. Once the first process was complete, an introduction of the new 'truths' about the indigenous people formed; this was that they are stupid, lazy, promiscuous, dirty, and so on. The harsh and violent actions also diminished the indigenous peoples' cultural and spiritual beliefs, many of them then turning to alcohol and drugs as a form of coping. Alternately it caused more violence and deviant behavior, and since crimes that were not before considered illegal now were countless indigenous people were punished by being imprisoned or killed [Atkinsons, Wood (2018)]. Colonization triggered racial segregation, and as they continue treating indigenous people as though they are primitive and fossilized culture. Rather than being able to embrace or cope with these changes, indigenous people are not being given the same opportunities or treated with the same respect as any other living individual. We still see the effects of this trauma and violence being passed down to newer generations. From 1788 to today, violence rates have reflected the incarceration rates, and many other issues are not being adequately acknowledged, confronted, or attended to through state prevention and intervention programs causing many of the indigenous youth to find themselves in trouble with the law repeatedly.
Colonization could not have taken place without racism. Racism allows one person or group to ignore or overpower another person or group and their rights. Racism has enabled many exploitations to take place whether it is depriving a child of an unbiased opportunity for an education or to allow a man, women or child to be used sexually by individual who thinks they have right to do so [Atkinsons, Wood (2018)]. These continual community and economic shortcomings also place Indigenous youth at higher risk of behavioral and environmental health hazards. Many indigenous people are still fighting to have land returned to its original owners, while also struggling with the intergenerational loss and grief associated with colonization. Throughout seven visits to a remote Indigenous community in the Northern Territory, observing the newer generations, they find it hard becoming accustomed to their part in society and what is expected of them due to mental health issues from trauma inherited down from the colonizing process. Mental health problems can help to understand and enlighten how indigenous youth conduct themselves and why they might deviate from the social norms. Other factors also affect indigenous mental and physical health to deteriorate. These factors include drinking and substance misuse; smoking and poor diet contribute also, and since colonizers introduced them, Indigenous people consider them out of their control and do not take responsibility [Chenhall, Senior (2009)].
In conclusion, both sources of information have revealed that the trauma and violence imposed on indigenous people during colonization has had a domino effect on the newer generation and why they make up 95% of our incarcerated youth. In 1989 the first specialized court program was established to focus on the large number of drug-related offenses being recorded by the criminal justice system. Using these specialized programs gave the courts a way to become more involved in the treatment of offenders. Specialized court programs have expanded in both numbers and variety, such as mental health, domestic violence, and family court, through evidence-based treatment. There is no set or specific framework which the programs run by, which is why some are more effective than others; specialized court programs work to promote lawbreaker compliance in a court setting and, eventually, rehabilitation [Kaiser, Holtfreter (2016)]. Meta-analytic techniques have been used to assess drug court programs, which is the only court that has been assessed; this is done by investigative the governing influence of programmatic and non-programmatic characteristics on effectiveness. Both these experiential assessments found that drug court programs have a reasonable effect on reductions in recidivism. Both evaluations recognized the lack of a theoretical framework as a continual challenge for these sorts of programs [Kaiser, Holtfreter (2016)].
Specialized courts offer a person the opportunity to avoid being incarcerated by pledging to an intensive supervised program of substance abuse rehabilitation. These programs can also include random drug testing, regular court appearances, and mandatory support counseling meetings such as 12-step recovery groups [Waldmeir (2018)]. A combination of funding from local and state governments is what the courts and programs receive; some also receive federal funding. Numerous programs rely on non-profits to pay for addiction treatments, also for job and training searches that aid in helping participants stay clean. Many staff donate their time; there are also people trying to get clean themselves who help finance the programs by paying a monthly fee. An on-call team is working around the clock to help addicts get clean and stay clean, the money of local charities and government to help to remove obstacles that kept them stuck in addiction in the first place, such as problems with jobs, housing and family [Waldmeir (2018)].
The disadvantages are there are no clear guidelines or frameworks for a program to follow, so each one is different and may not be as useful for the participants, which can be a waste of valuable funding. The advantages of specialized drug courts are clear as they serve over 120,000 people in the US alone every year. Helping people to get clean and stay clean, which means they have also been successful at decreasing reoffending rates for the participants they support. That kind of outcome defiantly outweighs any of the negatives associated with specialized courts.
Manslaughter is considered a crime, although it is a lesser crime than murder. Manslaughter does not require malice premeditation. Because of this difference, the punishment tends to be much less than the punishment for murder, although punishments for committing manslaughter are still severe. There are two types of manslaughter charges: voluntary and involuntary. Voluntary manslaughter charges may occur when a person who is strongly provoked kills someone else under the heat of passion. For example, when a person kills someone who has hurt his or her child, has found his or her spouse in the act of adultery or under other circumstances defined under the manslaughter statute. Involuntary manslaughter is when someone acts in a criminally careless or reckless way that causes the death of another. This type of charge is more likely in cases involving automotive incidents, such as when a person's drunk driving results in the death of another person. When using self-defense results in a death, this type of killing is not considered a crime like a manslaughter or murder is.
The justice system recognizes the right of someone to protect himself or herself from harm. In order for self-defense to apply, the defendant must have believed that he or she was in imminent danger of harm and that the degree of force he or she used was reasonably vital to protect his or her safety or that of a third person. Different states have different guidelines regarding the claim of self-defense. Different states impose an obligation to retreat on the defendant in which he or she must first attempt to get away from the source of danger before exerting force in order to assert this defense. Another state will only permit someone not to retreat if he or she was on their way home at the time of the attack. Other factors may be relevant in the application of this defense, such as who was the original aggressor, whether the defendant was engaged in criminal activity at the time that he or she asserts the defense and who intensified the dispute. Another possibility is that someone may commit an accidental killing. He or she cannot be held criminally responsible if the person's behavior did not rise to a criminal level. However, there may still be civil accountability if the behavior was negligent but not criminally negligent. In this case, a person may be sued for causing the death of someone else [HG.org].
These facts clearly state that there are different categories of manslaughter, which is beneficial for the defendant as they can plead their case. If they were provoked, they would still have a severe but lesser sentence then murder because it was not pre-meditated to cause death to the victim.
- Atkinson, Judy, & Woods, Glenn. (2008). Turning dreams into nightmares and nightmares into dreams. (violence and aboriginal Australians) (Report). Borderlands, 7(2), Borderlands, Oct, 2008, Vol.7(2). Doi: 1447-0810
- Chenhall, R., & Senior, K. (2009). Those Young People All Crankybella: Indigenous Youth Mental Health and Globalization. International Journal of Mental Health, 38(3), 28-43. Doi: 10.2753
- Kaiser, K., & Holtfreter, K. (2016). An Integrated Theory of Specialized Court Programs: Using Procedural Justice and Therapeutic Jurisprudence to Promote Offender Compliance and Rehabilitation. Criminal Justice and Behavior, 43(1), 45-62. Doi: 10.1177
- Patti Waldmeir. (2018). Can drug courts help America get clean? Specialized courts where non-violent offenders avoid jail by agreeing to intensive mentoring and support are winning plaudits. Patti Waldmeir reports on a rare glimmer of hope amid America's opioid crisis. The Financial Times, p. 16. ISSN: 0307-1766
- HG.org: When Is It Self-Defense and When Is It Manslaughter. https://www.hg.org/legal-articles/when-is-it-self-defense-and-when-is-it-manslaughter-40325.