Youth is a turbulent phase in an individual’s life. One experiences change and that too at fast pace, when they are young and these changes, more or less, build and shape their future. It is but obvious that a natural tendency to disobey the rules grips most of us at a young age but at times, it leads to some unintended consequences of being involved in illegal activities, some of which are even heinous. A research has shown that about 40% of prisoners in Indian jails are below 30 years of age which testifies to the fact that youngsters in our country are getting increasingly involved in illegal activities. The reasons for taking up a life guided by crime may be different for all of them, ranging from lust for money, coercion or just plain adventure. Here, we present to you, top 10 illegal things youngsters get themselves into.
This one owes much to peer-pressure and is mostly found among the ambitious lot. Youngsters who are exposed to betting once find it a way to earn ‘easy money’ and start getting involved in such activities, in spite of the risks involved. Usually, these activities are carried out by a huge nexus of criminal gangs who do not let you off the hook easily once you are involved with them. It usually comes to an end only when youngsters find themselves in deep trouble (financial losses) or are eventually busted out as a part of some racket. Either ending of these is definitely not a happy one!
Stealing as a habit begins mostly in childhood itself when kids start stealing from their own houses. While some stop there as they grow up, others make it big and adopt it full time! Whereas activities like betting, hacking or racing require some initial investments, this one is quite easy going in that sense. Hence, it is taken up generally by those youngsters who are born and brought up in a family that’s financially weak. A part of both an organized syndicate and unorganized illegal activities, stealing is popular among the youth as it doesn’t require any special skills. However, that doesn’t make it any less illegal than the rest. After all, to quote Khalid Hosseini, “Stealing is the only sin.”
Many youngsters feel that their skills will remain untapped within the boundaries of the law and thus, they move on to illegal acts of robberies to showcase their talent. Made quite popular by the popular culture, robbery as an illegal activity has found many buyers among the youth due to its huge earning potential. However, what really eludes the youth is the seriousness with which it is dealt with under law. Most of the countries in the world have severe punishments for robbery related cases which are usually proportionate to the amount involved in the crime.
With everything around us being digitized, from education to services, can crime be left far behind! In today’s world, where most of the transactions are taking an online route, hacking has found a place in the criminals’ kitty and guess who is facilitating it? It’s the youngsters. With a youth that is computer savvy and more learned on the technological front, taking up hacking as a means to earn money seems neat and glamorous as well. This is precisely why more and more youngsters are making use of computer education in the wrong way.
6. Street Racing
Well, this one has Hollywood written all over it! Fast and Furious, Torque, Death Race, all these movies have glorified illegal racing among youth and as a result, many youngsters passionately take up this line as they feel that it’s “cool”. What’s even more unfortunate is that most of them aren’t even aware of the fact that street racing is not legal. By getting into such activities they not only risk getting caught by the police but also put their lives in danger.
An ever growing menace all over the world, drugs and related crimes have been giving the law makers and peace keepers a hard time everywhere. It is at first thought to be one of those “cool” things to do when you’re young but slowly and gradually, it first becomes an addiction and once you’re deep down into a cartel, there’s no coming back. Huge sums of money are involved in drug related activities which often operate internationally. For some of the youngsters, it sounds exciting and they get into it, only to regret later.
Whereas drugs related activities operate on an international level, this one here is for local boys! Quite easy to execute and manage within small areas, holding people for ransom is taken up by many as they see no harm in doing it as it doesn’t really involve risking lives. At least that’s what they think! However, it’s only a matter of time before someone gets really hurt and they realize the gravity of this illegal act.
Mostly involving girls at a young age, prostitution is really poaching out on the vulnerabilities of youngsters. Most of the girls or boys involved in this profession enter it because of some financial crisis. Others may do it out of curiosity or just for the sake of trying it, but no matter what, once you enter this chaotic world, you get exposed to all sorts of other illegal activities too, as most of them like drugs, robbery etc. work in tandem with this one.
With the likes of organizations such as ISIS raising their ugly heads all over the world, protecting the youth from such bodies has suddenly become the numero uno priority of countries. These terrorist organizations try hard to recruit youngsters to carry out their silly propaganda of killing people and terrorizing them in the name of some pseduo-religious mumbo-jumbo! They adopt ways like brainwashing young people or coercing them into joining their cause in exchange for a handsome life for their families but in reality, it is nothing but sad that our youth is getting poisoned so easily in the influence of ideas preached by some failed cleric.
With all those euphemisms of “thug life” doing the rounds these days, thuggery has actually found a place in the popular culture, which to some extent, has even legitimized the institution of gangs. Movies like Godfather, Fight Club have actually glorified this culture where being a part of some gang is a fad. What they fail to see however, is that such a life has no meaning, respect in society and often ends in jail or in worse cases, on a deathbed.
It is true that we have most of the fun in our lives when we’re young and yes, that involves breaking some rules sometimes. But, as responsible citizens and human beings, we should know our boundaries and not cross one. The role of the State and families also becomes important here in the way that they should not let youngsters get indoctrinated by such ideas from popular culture or institutions. Youth are the future of any society, as clichéd as that may sound, that should not affect our seriousness towards this statement. Youngsters should be taught to make the older ones leave the criminal life and work for a crime-free society as they possess that vigor in them, which, if channelized in the right direction, can do wonders.