Why Do People Commit A Crime?

Why Do People Commit A Crime?

Isn’t it a curiosity how so many crimes are committed every day? What might be the reason for this? Many researchers worked on this topic and came up with different explanations. Ted Bundy, Albert DeSalvo, Aileen Wuornos, Richard Ramirez, Charles Manson, H.H. Holmes, Jeffrey Dahmer and Elizabeth Báthory are some of the most famous and dangerous criminals the world has seen but isn’t it intriguing to notice out of nine names here, and two were of women. Psychologists and sociologists have had their own research and claims to back as to why men tend to be more involved with crime than women. 

Men and women have a different way to vent out their anger and, in a way, it is dictated by society. Men are expected to vent out their frustration, stress, anger in more violent ways meanwhile women who are to use more subtle ways to vent their aggression (not hurting anyone physically), manipulation or being passive aggressive. Maybe the reason why this happens is because our society is built in a way where both the genders are taught to have different roles thus the upbringing differs. It is often seen that women are taught to control and alter their feelings and emotions, especially anger according to the people and environment they are in. A Finnish researcher Kaj Bjorkqvist, researched on the topic about aggression among both the genders. It was already observed that boys are predisposed to anger but when he interviewed adolescent girls, he discovered that girls are equally aggressive but they let it out in different ways. Instead of fighting in a playground, they play subtle mind games that may be even more damaging. Regina Goerge in 2004’s Mean Girls, an adaption of book "Queen Bees and Wannabes: Helping Your Daughter Survive Cliques, Gossip, Boyfriends, and Other Realities of Adolescence" by Rosalind Wiseman. Regina was portrayed as a toxic person who used to manipulate and bully others by dictating their lives by ordering them to wear certain clothes on some days and making various school rules. There are students who actually bully in school and it is a problem to be focused on.

Children witnessing and internalizing the idea of parents fighting where both the parents put forth their aggressive self has negative impacts. It is necessary to teach them how to control their emotions and helping them with a positive outlet for their negative emotions. One of the reasons for male statistics to be higher than women is inter-male competition. According to sociological and evolutionary psychological perspective, psychologist and professor Mark van Vugt, from VU University at Amsterdam, Netherlands, argued that males have evolved to be more aggressive and group oriented throughout the time as to gain access to resources, territories and higher status. High homicide stats of males are the direct result of the  competition which leads to higher level of violence (assault, murder and battery). The large number of criminal activities between men, if compared to women, is a direct consequence of the male competition. Fights further escalate when neither of the males are ready to back down, until they become violent or one of them ends up giving up. Studies showed a correlation between testosterone and dominance in males especially among the most violent criminals in prison. Another theory suggested that evolutionary neuroandrogenic theory of male aggression. Testosterone and other androgens have evolved to masculinize a brain in order to be competitive, going as far as harming or killing each other. Individuals with masculinized brains as a result of pre-natal and adult life testosterone and androgens enhance their resource acquiring abilities in order to survive, and attract.

Economist Jeffery Grogger states that high crime rate among females might also be because of their need to provide for their family and adverse labor market opportunities. We all know, in our society, it is expected for the male in the house to earn and take care of the family which builds up a pressure on the person’s mind but now the times are changing where women are also working and making their career. Males have this idea of solely working and providing for the family ingrained inside them that does not let them get diverted. With the societal expectations and already present psychological stress they become desperate to do the designated task that when there is unavailability of a decent paying job, young males become prone to taking up criminal act that promise higher payoffs. When a person finds it difficult to look after his family and is in dire need of a money and it is not available, they tend to turn towards other alternatives which ends up being the criminal sector.

Rape, Murder, Drug trade, trafficking, arms trafficking, illegal business etc are few of the crimes which are committed by the people in the society. It is important to keep a check on each other, and motivate to do positive things with positive approach so that no one ends up taking a drastic step of committing a crime.

About the Author

Fiza Abbas
Student.

I recently completed my honours degree in Social Sciences and Humanities from Ambedkar University Delhi. Here, an o

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