8-2 Discussion: Make Your Case

Throughout this course, you have studied numerous theories that attempt to explain criminal behavior. Because criminology is closely connected to sociology, explanations of criminal behavior have been predominantly sociological. Some criminological theorists who offer biological and psychological explanations for criminal behavior believe that their theories, for a variety of reasons, have not been as broadly accepted or considered. Some newer criminologists, like Brian Boutwell, even make the argument that criminology will cease to be relevant, because other fields that are more welcoming to biological theories and, more specifically, genetic influences, will surpass criminology and offer better ways to reduce crime. They argue that genetic influences should be a key consideration in criminology going forward.

Take a position. Should genetic influences be a key consideration in the advancement of criminology?

First, title your post either “Genetic influences should be a key consideration in the advancement of criminology” or “Genetic influences should not be a key consideration in the advancement of criminology.”

Then, make your case. Provide your rationale supported by research to defend your position. You may want to take into consideration some of the following as you make your case:

  • Why might biological and psychological theories be dismissed or not considered as relevant by criminologists and criminal justice professionals?
  • What are some of the concerns about genetics research?
  • How does including genetic influences make other criminological theories stronger?
  • How might the consideration of genetic influences in the application of theory help criminal justice professionals reduce or prevent crime?