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Neighborhoods Plagued with High Legal Cynicism Are Also the Neighborhoods Played by

By November 23, 2022Uncategorized

Another limitation of the PHDCN is that the data comes from a single city. It is possible that the cultural processes we examine in this study were shaped by unique attributes of Chicago, including its position in the historical context of crime and criminal justice models in the United States. The legacy of slavery, immigration policies, residential segregation, and extreme racial and ethnic differences in criminal justice outcomes can shape the meaning and character of right-wing cynicism in American cities, especially when it affects African Americans and Latinos. For example, Kirk and Matsuda (2011) found that in Chicago, concentrated neighborhoods of African Americans had higher levels of legal cynicism, which was associated with a lower likelihood of arrest after committing a crime. In their study of New York City, Kirk et al. (2012) found that municipalities with a high concentration of immigrants had lower levels of right-wing cynicism, which was associated with increased cooperation with police. Kirk and his colleagues pointed out that the low level of right-wing cynicism in these immigrant communities could be undermined by aggressive immigration enforcement. These two studies not only show the importance of race and ethnicity in the United States, but they also show that racial and ethnic differences in police cooperation outcomes are partly explained by a cultural framework – right-wing cynicism. The broader implication beyond the scope of this analysis is that cultural frameworks such as right-wing cynicism can explain differences between racial and ethnic groups relevant to a particular national or historical context. Our main independent neighbourhood variable, legal cynicism, was assessed against the responses of all adult participants to the CRPD-CS.

This measure helps determine the extent to which residents lack confidence in the law and law enforcement. According to Kirk and Papachristos (2011), our level of right-wing cynicism included responses to the following three points: (1) “Laws were made to be broken,” (2) “Police are not doing a good job of crime prevention in this neighborhood,” and (3) “Police are unable to maintain order on neighborhood streets and sidewalks.” Early responses ranged from 1 (“strongly agree”) to 5 (“strongly disagree”). To measure legal cynicism, we first estimated a three-step linear item-response theory (IRT) model with elements inversely nested in respondents nested in each of the 342 NCs. The IRT model viewed right-wing cynicism as an underlying construct whose latent value at the neighborhood level is based on elements of scale as well as individual and neighborhood predispositions. 3 From the IRT model, we derived the fitted empirical Bayes sections (EB) at the neighborhood level (multi-level reliability = 0.785). These EB-adjusted sections formed our final measure – the average of legal cynicism in each neighbourhood, adjusted for the severity of scale elements, as well as random variation at the individual and neighbourhood level (Sampson et al. 1997; Raudenbush and Bryk, 2002). The PHDCN-LCS is a longitudinal study examining human development in early childhood and emerging adulthood among Chicago youth. For the LCS, Chicago`s 865 census districts were grouped into 343 NCs, which maintained relative homogeneity of the population in terms of racial and ethnic composition, housing, and family structure. RSPHD researchers also defined CNs based on ecological boundaries such as parks, railways and highways. Each NC had about 8,000 people. From there, a two-stage sampling process was used to create a probability sample consisting of 80 of the 343 NCs stratified by socioeconomic status (high, medium and low) and racial and ethnic composition (seven categories).

The main objective of sample stratification was to obtain a consistent representation of CN across the 21 strata. Census blocks were randomly selected from each of the 80 representative NCs. Within each block, children and future adults from seven age cohorts (infants aged 3, 6, 9, 12, 15 and 18 years) from randomly selected households were selected. At home, interviews were conducted with adolescent respondents and their primary caregivers. We focused on respondents in cohorts 9 to 15, as parental assessments of respondents` traits and reports of violence were only collected from these cohorts during the first wave of the RSPHD. Our final sample consisted of 2,293 adolescent respondents with their primary caregivers in 80 NCs. Criminologists have increasingly focused on the consequences of right-wing cynicism in neighborhoods. Legal cynicism refers to the cultural view that the legal system is illegitimate, does not adequately protect against victimization, and does not properly deal with (criminal) crimes.

Accordingly, alternative dispute resolution or personal safety assurance strategies should be preferred to legal remedies in cynical legal contexts. In fact, higher levels of right-wing cynicism in the neighbourhood have been associated with increased rates of violence (Kirk & Papachristos, 2011) and a lower likelihood of arrest for juvenile delinquency (Kirk & Matsuda, 2011). However, apparently no study has quantitatively assessed whether and how legal cynicism influences the assessment of violence and aggression that have been inconsistently associated with juvenile delinquency and delinquency in different neighbourhoods (Lynam et al. 2000; Zimmerman, 2010). To fill this gap in the literature, we examine whether and how right-wing cynicism influences the assessment of youth violent behaviour. In particular, we test whether the degree of right-wing cynicism that characterizes the neighborhood influences parents` interpretations of their children`s violent behavior as an indication of trait-based predispositions. We tested parents` assessments of their children`s exposure to violence using a dummy variable that indicated whether the primary caregiver believed the adolescent had been exposed to at least one of the four violent events, such as a shooting or physical assault, in the year prior to the interview. We included a measure of peer violence based on four items that reported the proportion of the youth`s friends who committed violence, including: assaulted someone with a firearm (as reported by the adolescent respondent). Responses ranged from 1 (“none of them”) to 3 (“all”) (Zimmerman & Messner, 2010).

Our measure of peer-to-peer delinquency was the average item value (α = 0.675). We also included a dummy variable that indicates whether a family member of adolescents has a criminal record or has been arrested. 5We use the homicide rate because it is measured more reliably than other violent crimes (e.g., robbery and assault). Legal cynicism is an area of legal socialization defined by the perception that the legal system and law enforcement agencies are “illegitimate, insensitive, and ill-equipped to ensure public safety.” [1] [2] It is linked to the legitimacy of policing, and both serve as important means for researchers to study citizens` perceptions of law enforcement. [3] We included measures of the parent-child relationship that may affect parents` awareness of their children`s behaviour. Parental warmth captured affective parenting styles as measured by the Home Observation for Measurement of the Environment (HOME) inventory (Caldwell & Bradley, 1984). The scale included nine items rated by the interviewer that indicated whether the primary caregiver had taken actions such as mentioning a particular skill of the central respondent or praising the adolescent during the Wave 1 interview. Previous research using PHDCN data has shown high reliability and validity for the parental heat scale (Leventhal et al. 2004). Our measure of parental heat was the average of the items (α = 0.759).

2We performed additional analyses (results are not presented but are available on request) based on the IRT force measurement proposed by Raudenbush et al. (2003). The results, which are based on an IRT-wide measure of violence, are almost identical to those presented in this study. In addition, both measures of violence are correlated at 0.97. With the inclusion of this concept of interaction, we no longer find inexplicable differences in the increase in youth violence between neighbourhoods. Consistent with the results of the aggression assessment, this finding suggests that legal cynicism explains the random variation in the association between youth violence and parental assessments of impulsivity in neighbourhoods. Using data from the NHDCP and administrative sources, we tested our hypothesis with multi-level regressions of parental assessments of two traits based on violence-related predispositions—aggression and impulsivity—adolescent self-reported violence, neighbourhood legal cynicism, and inter-level interaction between the two measures. We find that right-wing cynicism weakens positive correlations between adolescent-reported violence and any parental assessment results.