The theory of self-control applied to criminology has received many criticisms because it is only concentrated on the individual as the only source of deviant behavior and eliminates the role of society in influencing the individual to behave in either an acceptable or unacceptable manner. The self-control theory of crime is blaming parents and family members of individuals that resort to criminal acts. This theory is acceptable because the family is highly influential in shaping the way of thinking and behavior of children.
It is their responsibility to oversee the growth and development of their children, and experiences within the home are primary indicators of an individual’s identity and personality. Moreover, children who are disciplined by their parents are most likely to steer away from deviant behavior they are responsible enough to think about the consequences of their actions because they were equipped with the proper principles and virtues to determine what is right from wrong.
Although this is the case, it should not entirely account for an individual’s deviant behavior because there are other factors, such as the environment, the community, or the society, that should account for the quality of life in terms of peace in order. Putting blame on the family is acceptable. Perhaps, families should be the first to blame concerning individuals who commit unacceptable acts and behaves in a deviant manner.
However, there are other aspects related to the individual that are also influential in shaping his personality and individuality. These other factors may include the peer group, the behavior and way of life of people living in the community where an individual belongs, the media, the religious institution, educational institutions, etc. All components of society are responsible for all individuals. Therefore, everything that is happening in society reflects the kind of people living in it.
Moreover, the self-control theory of crime may not always be the basis for explaining criminal acts. (Hamilton, 2000) The self-control theory of crime should only be one aspect of explicating why individuals resort to deviant behavior and stray away from the norms and mores observed by society. A research study conducted by Hamilton (2000) looks at criminology in a different light. The theoretical perspective of crime was attributed to both self-control theory and social-control theory.
The intensity of control of individuals and society are proportional to each other, meaning the control of society influences self-control, and vice versa. The general idea of the research is revealed within four ideas: high self-control in a highly controlled society results to low criminality, low self-control in a highly controlled society results to medium high criminality, high self control in an uncontrolled society results to medium criminality, and low self-control in an uncontrolled society results to high criminality. (Hamilton, 2000)