Respond to traci post | Criminal homework help

I believe the interactionist theory, the differential opportunity theory, offers the best explanation for property crime. This theory is based on the idea that individuals engage in criminal behavior because of unequal access to opportunities for success. Individuals from underprivileged backgrounds may choose criminal behaviors as a way to achieve their goals. The unequal access to opportunities also causes frustration. This theory focuses on social and economic factors to explain criminal behavior. It also focuses on the idea that criminal behavior is learned and culturally transmitted. The shared inequalities among individuals also leads to the formation of delinquent subcultures. Criminal gangs begin to emerge, and older criminals serve as role models which creates a cycle of criminal behavior (Adler, 2021).

One of the main criticisms of the differential opportunity theory is that it is class-oriented. It is based on the idea that delinquency is a response to a lack of opportunities, therefore, it is only an explanation for lower-class individuals. But not all lower-class individuals who are unable to reach society’s goals choose criminal behavior or become members of criminal gangs. Many choose to accept their situation or find other means to reach their goals (Adler, 2021).

This theory can influence the practices criminal justice professionals use to reduce crime by focusing on the importance of addressing social and economic inequalities. Rather than focusing on deterrence through punishment, criminal justice professionals can be more proactive by assisting individuals with resources to help them reach their goals. This could include programs, policies, or employment opportunities.


Adler, F.  (20210219). Criminology, 10th Edition. [[VitalSource Bookshelf version]].  Retrieved from vbk://9781264169658

For your two peer responses, respond to one peer who chose the same critical or interactionist theory and one peer who chose a different theory. (If no one chose the same theory you chose, respond to one that is similar to yours or in the same category.) In your responses, consider the following questions:

  • Is there something in their support of the theory they chose that you did not consider?
  • Which of their points make the most sense to you, even if you do not agree with the theory they chose?
  • What is another possible way their chosen theory might help criminal justice professionals reduce crime?


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