The changing nature of crime has a direct impact on criminology on the simple fact that as crime changes so does the reasoning behind it.

RESPOND TO THIS: The changing nature of crime has a direct impact on criminology on the simple fact that as crime changes so does the reasoning behind it.  Different people commit crimes for different reasoning, as Barlow and Kauzlarich (2010) state, “criminologists visualize their field and its subject matter reflects their particular set of beliefs and values.” (p. 10)  When criminologists look at crime and try to determine the reasoning behind the individuals committing the crime, it gives them an insight as to when and how future crimes are going to be committed and be able to narrow it down to a group of individuals who fit the characteristics to commit those crimes in the future.  Where the impact comes into play, is in today’s society the nature of why people commit crimes are starting to change.  Although most crime can be based on the idea of greed, individuals wanting things that feel they deserve but don’t, many crimes committed these days can be attributed to necessity. When a crime committed comes out of necessity is brought to light, it could be said that crimes out of necessity do not exist, this is why it is important for criminologists to examine all the possibilities of a why a crime was committed.           A crime out of necessity can come from a variety of backgrounds and be committed for completely different reasons.  For instance, an individual who steals food to feed his/her family because they do not have the money to buy the food, is the same as someone who steals the food just to steal it even though they have the money.  The reasons behind the crime are different but the crime is the same, this is where the changing nature of crime impacts criminology.  When investigating the crime, the determination will have to be made of why the crime was committed, then the reasonings can be grouped into different categories that define the crime and help the criminal justice system determine what path to take for punishment to ensure the punishment fits the crime. So, as the nature of crimes change, so do the people that commit that crime, instead typical criminals being grouped into simple demographics, as crimes change so do the demographics of criminals.  Businessmen, housewives, military, and even police officers have been known to commit crimes, so with that criminologists who study these crimes have to find a way to understand why these individuals are committing these crimes, and as these crimes evolve so should the way we classify them. Criminologists can take the information given to them, identify the demographic of individuals, group them into categories and ensure that the nature and reasoning of the crime can be understood.  When the nature of the crime can start to be understood, so can the individuals who committed the crime and reasoning be understood as well. Once the changing nature of crime can start to be understood, we as a society can start putting things in place to prevent them from happening again in the future.  However, as soon as we find a way to stop it, it will change again and be a part of the cycle and this is why the changing nature of crime has a huge impact on criminology.             Criminological research can impact social policy with the simple fact that that if the research is done properly, it can rule out and categorize any bias theories behind the crime.  When looking at the example provided in the first paragraph, a crime of necessity is a possibility, but further research must be done to ensure that individuals are treated fairly and not discriminated against.  This is where criminology research can impact society, to determine if the background of the person committing the crime can be a result of inequality.  As Warren (2010) points out, “Inequality is important because it implies that society is socially stratified, such that people are ordered or ranked in relation to one another.” (p. 715) Because of the inequality the currently exists in our society, people do have to commit crimes out of necessity, whether it be petty theft or grand larceny, some people can justify it to themselves that it has to be done.  Right or wrong, how they justify it to themselves can be big factor in the reason behind the crime.  This is what criminologist can take into consideration in their research when determining how to classify crimes and people into groups and the theories behind the crimes.  When research can show the differences in the backgrounds of individuals committing the crimes, they can be placed into those groups and show the demographic of where the majority of the crimes come from.  Take into consideration where the majority of crimes are committed and the class of individuals committing the crime.  One could say that in upper class areas, the crime rate is normally lower, is this because the crimes are not reported or the class of people that live there do not commit crimes.  On the opposite spectrum, inner cities or lower-class neighborhoods have a higher crime rate. This is where the inequality factors can come into play, just like in the real-life scenario, a person from a higher class is not going to steal food, where as someone who cannot afford it such as a lower-class person would.  This can be related to the inequality of the two individuals, they are not equal but that does not make them any better than one another.  Criminology research would show the differences in the two individuals from different classes and explain the differences in their social classes.  When these people are divided into these categories, the impact that is has on social theory of the individuals, not only spreads the divide in between the two classes, but it continues to put a further strain on the views of upper-class citizens on the lower class.  If in criminology research, the distinct differences of individuals are not identified, it makes it even more difficult on the individuals that are put into that lower class.  Criminology research is based on facts and if done properly, inequality differences between classes should not have an effect.  Criminology can help or hinder social theory, but it can highlight and define why crimes are committed.