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In the 1960s, the civil rights movement started to dispute issues distressing minorities and demonstrated against the discriminatory practices in America (Williams & McShane, 2010). The civil rights movement made citizens realized the unfair treatment of women, for example, females had no rights to vote during government elections. The media initiated discussions about the unequal treatment of women and equal opportunity to fair employment.

Women's Liberation Progression

The women's liberation movement played a major role to the exposure of feminist issues in America. The media devoted concerns to the fair treatment of women, for instance, news coverage reported on women's rights and cultural magazines commented on the progress of female issues (Williams & McShane, 2010).


Equal Rights Amendment

The civil rights and women's liberation movements played a significant role in condemning race and gender policies of the government. Minorities and feminist groups united to protest against unfair treatment through their messages of discriminatory practices in America. The United States Congress passed a constitutional amendment to guarantee that minorities and women would receive fair treatment and equal rights in America (Williams & McShane, 2010).

Conflict-Based Theories

Conflict-based theories rose from the social disorder of power struggles in relationships, for example, family, and work relationships (Williams & McShane, 2010). These social disorder issues lead to the focus on discussions about the gender equality in America.

Power Relationships

Power relationships exist as a part of everyday life. The family, and work environments involved people with the authority to make decisions and individuals to follow the decisions made at home or in the workplace. Power relationships will have differences according to the social classes of the culture; therefore morals and attitudes in life will vary among the role of the genders (Williams & McShane, 2010).

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Gender-Based Theories

Feminist issues became routine programs of study in many universities. The social sciences aided to concepts of the feminist theory, for instance, the oppression of women in a capitalistic economic system, violence against women at home and in the workplace (Williams & McShane, 2010).

The feminist issues focal point consists of research about women as offenders and victims in society (Williams & McShane, 2010).  The research has incorporated topics about females, for example, the ratios of woman to men in correctional institutions, and woman as victims to domestic violence in society.

When considering crime as a whole, females only make up about 20% of the criminality. Even though there is no sound reason why consideration should not be given to female behavior when studying crime (Williams, 2010).

By analyzing female criminal activity more closely criminologists can step away from the traditional theories that only focused on male behaviors and patterns. New studies will also allow researchers to develop gender sensitive interpretations of crimes and build a more solid feminist theory (Williams, 2010).

Paternalism suggests that females need to be protected for their own good. This thought process has created a society that males are independent and females are dependent (Williams, 2010).

Chivalry implies that attitudes toward female offenders may account for differential processing in the criminal justice system. If during a basic law enforcement interaction police routinely chose not to arrest women, then female crime rates would appear to be quite low. However, if the system were to reduce chivalry action then there would be the misconception that female crimes are rising (Williams, 2010).

Sexism plays a major role because while females are less likely to be apprehended than males, they are more likely to be detained and institutionalized for status offenses (Williams, 2010).

The Gender-based theory evolved because their was a lack of information regarding women and criminal behavior.  This interesting concept intrigued Freda Alder and Rita James Simon who are the mothers of this theory who examined women's perspective on female criminal behavior.

Throughout history the role of women were seen as caretakers, mothers, seamstress, and less dominate to their male counterparts. 

During the woman's liberation movement women gained the rights in the work force and obtain greater freedoms.  Through these freedoms females felt equal to their male counterparts and with this increase of freedom and confidence came an increase of violence perpetuated by women.

As women continue to be a dominate force in the workplace to opportunities that were not available years ago, the theory suggest that woman will partake in crimes similar to those of men.  White-collar crimes such as "fraud, embezzlement and grand larceny" (McShane & Williams, 2010, p. 191, para. 4).  Due to the opportunities woman face and the fact that women can use the gender to romance to sway their male partners and elude police, woman are becoming more dangerous than many men in the drug trafficking business.

Although the women's liberation movement was a huge step forward for women, the opportunities to continue to climb the corporate ladder was non-existent.  The difference in pay between men and woman showed a huge gap as men surpass women economically.

Women are generally underpaid and statistics how underemployed.  Female offenders normally falls within these statics and they are labeled pin-collar ghetto.  Jobs that are unrewarding and low in pay are usually offered to women (McShane & Williams, 2010).  Women coming from dysfunctional homes are female offenders that see's no other opportunities for them an they turn to a life of crime.

Woman suffering from pink-collar ghetto has a high arrest rate for property crime.   Women living below the line of poverty were found to have been involved in more violent crimes including homicides, robbery, and aggravated assault.

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