Chapter

Making Ethical Choices in Law and Public Policy

in Language of the Gun

Published by University of Chicago Press

Published in print February 2006 | ISBN: 9780226316086
Published online March 2013 | e-ISBN: 9780226316079 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.7208/chicago/9780226316079.003.0015
Making Ethical Choices in Law and Public Policy

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The centrality of action/protection to gun carrying, to gang membership, and also to the youths who are incarcerated on gun infractions suggests the need to target the idea that guns afford protection. This may translate into a number of policies, including a focus on youth conflict resolution, parental and school supervision, safety monitoring in schools and public areas, architectural redesign of schools, practice-based alternatives, and counseling. It may also mean finding ways to help the Catalina youths (young males at the Catalina Mountain School in Tucson, Arizona) discover how to express an identity that does not center on aggressive self-protection or involve life-threatening weapons—alternative ways for these youths to achieve respect for themselves and to create their own identity. The multiplicity of meanings, resistance, and contexts in a setting like the Catalina Mountain School in Tucson, Arizona, suggests that there is no quick fix, no silver bullet for youths' gun possession. There is no single meaning that we could reengineer to change these youths' behaviors.

Keywords: ethical choice; gun carrying; gang membership; public policy; Catalina youths; gun possession; conflict resolution

Chapter.  2514 words. 

Subjects: Criminal Law

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