Some people who have been in prison become good citizens later and it is often argued that these are the best people to talk to teenagers about the dangers of committing a crime. To what extent do you agree or disagree?
Imprisonment has successfully transformed many offenders and helped them turn over a new leaf to a brighter life. From my perspective, it is a wise choice to invite former prisoners to deliver valuable lessons and dispel any ideas of a crime life in adolescents’ minds. There are various reasons that make erstwhile perpetrators the best teachers about crime. First, they have first-hand experience of a criminal life, which enables them to share valid knowledge of the perils involved to their naive audiences. For example, former gang members can provide youngsters insights of the superficial and precarious relationships between so-called gang brothers which, to the normal eyes, seem so honorable through misleading movie depictions. Such insightful knowledge of the harsh realities would force the young listeners to think twice about their intention for this kind of existence. If simply being informative is not enough, former lawbreakers can still be incredibly convincing because they speak from experience and heartfelt emotions. Having survived the unforgiving conditions behind bars and been through all the pains of a failed life, they convey their messages in a much more powerful manner than those who have never suffered the same. Other educational alternatives, in my opinion, would prove to be less effective in practice. Police officers are well-qualified speakers but I doubt whether today’s young people would be happy to follow figures of authority, especially when there have been numerous viral online videos and photos of police corruption. Some argue for teachers to take the position but it seems an even less promising solution to me. Many students have grown very distant from their teachers and developed a tendency to do the exact opposite of teachers’ instructions. Finally, it makes sense to show juveniles educational films but they can by no means engage active youngsters like a powerful speaker standing in the room. In conclusion, the idea of promoting educational relationships between reformed wrongdoers and teenagers wins my complete approval. I believe they are perfect for this role thanks to their unique experience.