Holding Kids Accountable: Shaming with Compassion

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Describes the philosophy and procedures of Police Accountability Conferencing, a restorative justice approach in which police and school authorities, victims, offenders, and families are brought together in a process designed to hold youth accountable for their actions. Details the program's potential for reclaiming youth who have engaged in antisocial behavior. (RJM)

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... Indeed, shaming may be practiced for different reasons and with different intentions. While in some cases people may indeed wish to permanently exclude deviant individuals from participation in their group (for example, a sex offender or child molester), in other cases people may find it preferable to reintegrate them back into society (for example, a juvenile thief who acknowledges her/his crime and deserves a second chance) (Campbell and Revering 2002). Moreover, the modalities of shaming are often historically and culturally specific. ...
... RST suggests that, in some cases, strategies for responding to crime and wrongdoing may actually be doing more harm than good. For example, some schools and courts punish and humiliate offenders without offering a way to make amends, right the wrong or shed their offender label (Campbell and Revering 2002). As a result, offenders are stigmatised, alienated and pushed into society's growing subcultures. ...
... The adequacy of such educational methods left aside, reintegrative shaming presupposes the continued social integration into a social group. Or as Campbell and Revering (2002) put it, it is 'shaming with compassion'. ...
The existing scholarship in international relations (IR) has tended to underrate the conceptual implications of different types of shaming. This article advances a new terminology of shaming. Drawing from social and criminal psychology, the article distinguishes the social distancing effects of shaming that is disintegrative from the community-building effects of shaming that is reintegrative. This is important because it offers additional ways of seeing how it may be equally important to shed light on the multifaceted role and multiple effects of shaming in maintaining social order in world politics. The main argument raised here is that reintegrative shaming – shaming, which is followed by efforts to reintegrate the offender back into the community – is central to peaceful conflict resolution in a security community. This argument is empirically illustrated by the case of NATO’s military intervention in Libya.
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