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Violence in Society chapter 4

by: Cheyenne Schoenfeld

Violence in Society chapter 4 3250

Cheyenne Schoenfeld

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Chapter 4 notes
Violence in society
Henriikka Weir
Class Notes
Violence in Society
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This 5 page Class Notes was uploaded by Cheyenne Schoenfeld on Wednesday February 3, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to 3250 at University of Colorado Colorado Springs taught by Henriikka Weir in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 9 views. For similar materials see Violence in society in Criminology and Criminal Justice at University of Colorado Colorado Springs.


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Date Created: 02/03/16
Violence in Society  Henriikka Weir  Chapter 3  Week 4 Violence in Other Times and Places Violence in the Early United States  We need to compare the history of violence in the United States with other countries   American life has been characterized historically as continuously violent  o Criminal activity, political assassination, and racial conflict are part of this idea of American’s violence   Non­ criminal violence has also been a character of American life o Independence from Britain, freedom for slaves in the Civil War, stabilization of  the frontier, social elevation of farmers and labors through agrarian labor conflict White and Native American Warfare  Earliest contacts between European settlers and Native Americans were generally  peaceful o First thanksgiving was in 1621 o General W. Bradford proclaimed a day of thanksgiving and prayer for the  colonists and neighboring Native Americans  o 1682­ William Penn planned and named the city of Philadelphia while  establishing peaceful relations with local Native American tribes   From then on, treaties were often made, then broken and warfare ensued   Trail of Tears  o The Cherokee negotiated peaceful treaty with the United States in 1785 Trail of Tears   In 1827, the Cherokee drafted a constitution and incorporated as a Cherokee Nation  o Problems started when valuable gold deposits were discovered on tribal lands  o 1819­ Georgia appealed to the U.S. government to have the Cherokee removed  o The Cherokee enacted a law prohibiting the sale of tribal land under penalty of  death  o Georgia outlawed the Cherokee law and confiscated the tribe’s land   Federal troops began forcibly evicting the Cherokee   About 1,00 members escaped to NC, while the remaining 20,000 were marched 800  miles to “Indian Territory”  4,000 died in the march from disease, hunger and exposure­ in the exodus is known as the Trail of Tears   Other tribes were similarly offered treaties that were also broken as European settlers  wanted more land  o By the 1850’s, only scattered groups of Native Americans remained in the Eastern half of the U.S.  What really defeated the Native American’s?: Loss of Habitat and Attrition as most were  pushed onto reservations by the 1890’s  Slavery, African Americans & Violence   Slavery got its start with the rise of tobacco farming  o Tobacco was a very labor intensive business, initially, Native Americans  were used as a labor source  o Another approach were indentured servants   Young men sold themselves for labor for 4­7 years   They received no pay but were give 50 acres of land once their term  was over—The land was usually on swampy ground and  unsustainable   The indentured servants usually spoke no English, knew no law, and  had no idea when their term of service was up   Could be held in bondage for years, even life  th  By the middle of the 18  century, 90% of slaves lived in Southern States o Slavery was an unstable system: There was fear and unease among  southerners that their slaves would rise up and kill them, Plantation owners  had evidence that the slaves were not happy with their land, slaves had low  productivity o Constant plots; Nat Turners Rebellion  o Southern legislators used the white fear for the rebellion to make even  harsher laws   Lynching  o The 19  century was probably the most violent in American history   Conflicts over slavery become more intense, ended more often in  violent death, including the Civil War   2,500,000 served, while 620,000 died  o Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, led black soldiers to serve in  the Union Army  o The Enrollment Act of 1863 led to New York City Draft Riots  o Violence towards African Americans in the form of lynching became  especially pronounced after the Civil War. The south lost the war but  regained its losses by using murder as an instrument of social policy  o Poll taxes, literacy requirements, and legal segregation declined lynching  Social Banditry   After the Civil War, there was tremendous industrial growth mostly in the  North which brought unrestrained capitalism   Wealthy: Rockefellers, Carnegies and Morgans   Poverty: Sharecroppers, Framers, ranchers and small merchants  o Gangs organized for murder and robbery   Jessie James, Wild Bill Hickok, Billy the Kid, The Daltons  o Several reason why “Wild West” killers become romantic figures  Weak law enforcement, Confederate sympathizers admired  outlaws who were former Confederate  Prohibition   The 18  Amendment prohibited the sale, manufacturing, distribution, and  importing of intoxicating liquor in the US  o Amendment became effective in 1920 and was repealed in 1933 o Prohibition declined alcohol consumption. When the 18   th Amendment was repealed, alcohol consumption increased  o  However, the decline of alcohol consumption from prohibition  came with a price—The cost was seen in important social values   Disrespect for the law, increased consumption of distilled  spirits corrupted law enforcement, increased organized  crime Organized Crime   When a product is legal, laws govern relationships between employers,  employees, and the public  o Labor unions  The situation becomes different when the product is illegal  o Labor and concealment costs within organization, bribing law­ enforcement officials  o Organizations become larger and more profitable if they have no  competition; In the violent world of Prohibition, there was a  constant violent struggle to eliminate the competition   “Scarface” Al Capone  o Bootleg, mob hits, St. Valentine’s day Massacre   Contemporary Trends   Historians of criminal violence are frequently asked how currents rates  compare to violent crimes in the past o Comparing rates involves a large amount of guesswork o Before the 1900’s there was no national data o Lane’s (1979) research from 1839­1901 suggest the murder rate was down the the period before the Civil War and the murder rate in rural areas were  higher than in cities o Problems with historical rates?   Infanticide, intra­ vs. inter­racial killings, murders of Native  Americans on reservations o Impersonalization of Homicide  Serial murder and Domestic terrorism  Undermine the legitimacy of the existing legal, political  and cultural order by generating an enormous amount of  fear within a community  Stranger vs. family / friend perpetrated homicide  “The bad news that more Americans are being killed by  strangers, criminals, and teenagers has been balanced by  good news, in that lower percentages are being killed by  family, friends, and acquaintances” (Lane, 1997, p. 326).  Homicide arrest rate declined from 93% in 1960 to about  63% in 2008 Violence in Other Places  It is also important to know how violence in the U.S. compares to violence in comparable countries o If knowledge of violence is based on a single society, the US we have no way of  generalizing about the size of the problems  o Transnational comparisons allow researchers to not only to determine the relative  amount of violence, but also to explore general causes  o Such research allows us to understand whether specific causes are specific to  social structure and culture of one society  o Its clear that the U.S. is more violent that in comparable developed nations  o International data sources on homicides did not start until the 1950s   Collected by the private researchers, United Nations and the World Health Organization (WHO) Why The U.S has Higher Homicide Rates than Finland   Conclusions about the differences in homicide rates among countries based on statistics  assume they are comparable  o The context in which homicides occur not only serves to explain large  differences, but also suggest methods of reducing homicides  o To determine why the U.S. homicide rate was much higher than the rate for  Finland, all homicides involved criminal activity was removed from the data  o Handguns were involved in 55% of the U.S homicides but 9.5% in Finland did o Between the US and Finland criminal activity accounted for 81% in differences  between the homicide rates 


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