The Court's Effectiveness

The principal argument denotes the presumption that juveniles and parents may have conflict of interests and that even in the face of such a conflict the juvenile can still create reasoned decisions. Further, such a conflict may all the more reinforce the reasoned decision of the juvenile based on the juvenile’s cognitive capacity to understand the situation in lieu of his or her ‘innocence’. There are several instances when the interests of juveniles and parents may come into conflict. Some of these include the desire to have proper legal representation or which attorney will defend the juvenile before the court.

While parents may opt for the most competent lawyer, the juvenile may tend to settle for the lawyer he or she is most comfortable with granting that the child is aware of the situation he or she is currently facing. Another is the situation wherein the parents sees fit for the juvenile to admit the accusations while the juvenile on the other hand desires not to admit for he or she understands that he or she is innocent of the charges. There may still be quite a number of illustrations that can be provided in order to substantiate the point.

In essence, what is important is the argument that conflicts do occur between juveniles and their parents in terms of interests and/or rights. To say that a juvenile can still create reasoned decisions amidst existing juvenile-parent opposition is to say that a juvenile can override the conflict of interests and proceed with, as far as the rights of the juvenile is concerned, creating decisions before the juvenile court system. For instance, a juvenile can opt either to admit or not admit the pending legal charges with or without the opposing decisions of the parents.

In reality, even if the parents of the child attempt to convince the child to side with the proposal of the parents—such as to admit the charges—the bottom line remains that the juvenile still has the last say before the juvenile court hearing. To say that a juvenile has the capacity to create reasoned decisions even in the face of conflicting interests between the juvenile and the parent is reinforced by the previous discussion on the cognition of the juvenile and the perceived opposition between innocence and adulthood.

While the juvenile is not to be treated as empty of cognitive senses although the juvenile’s ‘innocence’ stands in contrast to adulthood, treating juveniles as “cognitively and morally undeveloped (Ainsworth, 1996, p. 64)” does not guarantee the presumption that they cannot create for themselves reasoned decisions. Quite on the contrary, juveniles, as individuals capable of “the act or process of coming to know (Kruse, 1937, p 226)” like those of adults, indeed can create reason decisions as the concept of their sense of morality and cognition’s being ‘undeveloped’ necessarily entails the presumption that these two senses can be refined.

Having the strong probability of being ‘refined’ or, in more relevant terms, ‘rehabilitate’ generally correspond to the idea that  the juvenile’s cognitive and moral sensibilities can still serve as foundations for their decisions.

The fact that these two elements are present guarantees the argument that juveniles can still arrive at reasoned decisions amidst the persistence of opposition between the interests of the juvenile and the parent. Conclusion While it is generally expected that the interests of the juvenile and the parents come in harmony in the juvenile justice system, one cannot simply deny the idea that conflicts between the juvenile and the parents do arise at some point in time. In cases like these, a look into the corresponding rights and interests from each side is necessary in order to arrive at a substantial analysis and fitting conclusion.

The paper came-up with the analysis that juveniles also have cognitive skills or manifestations thereof amidst contentions that the cognitive sense of juveniles is ‘undeveloped’. The presumption that the cognitive sense of juveniles is ‘undeveloped’ implies that: one, the cognitive skills of juveniles can still be ‘rehabilitated’ or ‘refined’ through the decisions they make and two, juveniles can still arrive at reasoned decisions based on their cognitive capacities.

The innocence of these juveniles, in contrast to the adult stage of the parents, exemplifies the notion that decisions of juveniles may be devoid of anxieties that distort the decisions in one way or another. In essence, the paper reaffirms the contention that juveniles can still arrive at reasoned decisions amidst the existence of conflict of interests between the child and the parent because of, though not limited to, the juvenile’s cognitive sense and innocence. The presumption of ‘undeveloped’ cognition does not dismiss nor dissolve the contentions of the paper.

Quite on the contrary, it reaffirms the arguments presented in the paper all the more.


Ainsworth, J. (1996). The Court's Effectiveness in Protecting the Rights of Juveniles in Delinquency Cases. The Future of Children, 6(3), 64-74. Ayers, W. (1997). Jane Addams: History and Background. In A Kind and Just Parent: The Children of Juvenile Court (pp. 32). Boston: Boston Beacon Press. Bloome, D. , & Theodorou, E. (1985). Reading, Writing, and Learning in the Classroom. Peabody Journal of Education, 62(3), 21.