Create a 10 pages page paper that discusses social inequality and crimes of elites. Social inequality should obviously contribute to crime ranking. However, it is important to understand in what way it affects society and groups.
There exist two major approaches to the reasons for making people commit a crime. Both of them are based on the concept of human nature. We all are supposed to be born with ‘inherent potentials and abilities’ that ‘interact with environmental influences to produce behaviour, some of which is considered criminal’ (Wiebe 2004). Why do some people violate the norms and laws of society? What is more responsible for the anti-social behaviour – external, objective circumstances or our inborn inclinations?
The XIX-XX centuries are notable for paying extreme attention to the environment as the major shaper of an individual’s behaviour, sometimes even ignoring predispositions. These views must have spread due to the socialists’ ideology. Radical environmentalism treats human nature as one consisting of “vague and consequently plastic predispositions” that constitute “the indeterminate material that the social factor melds and forms” (Durkheim, 1895/1962, pp. 105-106, In Wiebe 2004).
Another radical wing of scientists keeps to the theories based on the classical view of human nature, concepts developed by Hobbes and his contemporaries. The human is seen as a creature seeking ‘immediate gratification of selfish desires’ ready to ‘commit crimes in pursuit of this gratification’, which occurs ‘at the expense of the legitimate rights of others, undermining group interests’. In order to defend its interests, the group may either teach its members self-control or simply limit opportunities to satisfy impulses (In Wiebe 2004).
Besides, these two theories, there exist a variety of others. Strain theory teaches that people commit a crime when they are blocked from their legitimate opportunities to attain the desired goals, which are determined by the dominant culture.