Thanks for that Mom and Dad!

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naturevsnurture2.gif In Chapter 3, I found myself very much drawn to the section concerning behavioral genetics; this idea that how human beings act, behave may be due to what our parents gave us for genes. On the other hand though, I would argue that a lot of how we respond to certain situations (behave) is due to the environment in which we were raised --nature vs nurture at its finest. I find this idea to be interesting because a lot of times nowadays, criminals who are being tried for a crime may be let off because they were predisposed to being an alcoholic because their mother was. I don't necessarily buy that. I would agree that if they were raised in an environment where drinking was promoted or seen on a regular basis, they may be more prone to drink themselves. However, genetics do not excuse how some people act. All in all, I believe that overall the environment a person was raised is the most crucial element to criminal behavior.

In this article I've linked, this researcher has found evidence in other studies that has come to show that, usually, genetic factors don't play a key role in criminal behavior. There is a sentence in the article that reads, "[t]hey concluded therefore that in respect to common crime, hereditary factors are of little significance." However, it should be noted that reading a little farther into the researcher's paper, she concludes that although genetic factors may not play a major role in criminal behavior, those factors are more likely to influence property offenses.

So for myself, I find this debate quite interesting. One experiment that this paper I linked never covered and I'm sure this has been done before, but what would happen if researchers observed and measured the criminal behaviors of identical twins that were raised in different homes--say they were adopted by two different families? Maybe one of the adoptive families has a more "criminal-inclined" environment, where the other family has hardly any criminal history or "criminally-inclined" environment. This would give researchers any even more solid way of deciphering the nature/nurture effect because these adopted children have the same genotype, but different environments.

I continually find myself wondering how else we can tweak our research experiments to better understand this interesting idea. I find nature vs nurture a very fascinating topic!

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This page contains a single entry by will3602 published on October 1, 2011 2:09 PM.

"All things truly wicked start from an innocence." - Ernest Hemingway was the previous entry in this blog.

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