The Chinese government adopted free market economy in early 1990 and since then the country has experienced enormous economic growth. The rate of urbanization has also been increasing and this has brought new forms of crimes which the government must devise new ways of handling. The increased crime rate across the country is attributable to increasing economic inequality, disruption of traditional social control mechanism, massive rural urban migration, and introduction of western values, change in demographic features and decreased social interaction. In Caribbean countries the authorities have been unable to tame the increased criminality fueled by increased drug and gun trade. The drug cartels have established numerous sea and air routes which are also used for gun trade. Statistics have shown that, increased government attempts to control drugs trade has led to increased gun violence aimed at protecting the illicit trade.
Confucianism and Taoism sought to strengthen social order in china it advocated for everyone in the society to be inner directed and to have humanity. Therefore, with Confucianism there was no need of formal law in the country because it is a civil religion which emphasis on importance of goodness of mankind. Later on in 4th c Taoism philosophy emerged. This philosophy advocated for people to ignore the direction of society but conform to the rules and patterns of the universe. The philosophy justified its logic by emphasizing that essence of wisdom is to conform to the rhythm of universe. Therefore, Taoism complemented Confucianism and this brought harmony in china (LiU, Messne, & Zhang, 2001).
The Chinese society adopted the idea of shaming and reintegrating those who went against the societal norms. This is because the society developed a close link between workers and employers as well as relatives and non relatives. In fact the country lacked formal legal code but adopted the Confucianism ideologies which led to mounded people with acceptable moral character. It also empowered neighborhood mediation committees to resolve any societal conflicts. Therefore, the central government delegated to local groups powers to solve problems before escalating to major disputes.
On the other hand, the Caribbean countries were colonized for many years. There after many of the countries sunk into civil war. Therefore, the region lacked tangible traditional values which could maintain any order in the society. People lacked any duty of care towards each other and trust among neighbors was very low (Christopher, 2002).
Economic environment and crime
The economic changes in china have made the country to move away from egalitarianism to individualism associated with urbanization. According to urbanization theory, Industrial and urban growth undermines traditional social structures in a society. This disorganization and weak control increases aspects of property crimes. In addition, the migrants bring to cities traditional violence which increases cases of violent crime. The property crimes increase as immigrants adopt city life but traditional violence deteriorates to the extent of occurring only in context of property crime. Researchers have further attributed the declining violence to fall in interpersonal violence associated with weakening interpersonal ties. Despite the increased property crime being attributed to availability of valuable commodities which is not effectively protected, consumerism and money worship is the chief motivator of the increased criminology.
The newly adopted way of life i.e. consumerism and money worship has largely contributed to increased bribery and white collar crimes in china. Due to individualism state officers solicit bribes from people seeking government services. In addition, some people who do not want follow the stated order and protocol offer bribes in both public and private sector.
Though it is generally acceptable that crime rate in china has been increasing many researchers have not developed time trends on changes in criminality. This is attributable to lack of adequate data on different types of crimes as well as lack of in-depth information on criminal justice coupled with scanty information on political and policy implementation in china. However, some researchers have tried to compile the available data to come up graphs showing the criminal trend. The trends revealed that crime rate tripled from 55.91 per 100,000 in 1978 to 163.19 per 100,000 in 1998. However the trend has been characterized by sharp fluctuations. The fluctuations have been attributed to change in rate of offending, change in definition of crime, change in the way police collect and record crime information and the historical events that disrupt change in crime. For example, in 1983 two resolutions passed by the committee on national congress to tame crime are attributed to low crime rate in 1984, 1985 and 1986 (LiU, Messne, & Zhang, 2001).
Population migration and crime in Beijing
China relaxed migration regulations and economic liberalization motivated millions of people to move to urban centers. The high influx of people with different cultural perspectives has made urban centers more lively, dynamic but less safe. According to official reports migrating floating population contributed 18.5% of criminal activities in 1986, and 43% in 1993. In places where the floating population is concentrated the percentage is 80% to 90%. This floating population from rural areas was also main contributor of Minor criminal offences. For example, pick pocketing contributed 10,000 criminals in 1995 and 3,400 in 1997 all most all the offenders in both years were from floating population (LiU, Messne, & Zhang, 2001).
.The main types of criminal offences attributable to the floating population were related to property offences e.g. theft and robbery which was ether carried individually or in Joint crimes or gangs.
Relative deprivation theory explains the relationship between the criminality and migration in china. The theory suggests that the large income gap between urban and rural population presents a case of deprivation mindset among the rural population. According to Gini coefficient the income inequality has been increasing in Chinese cities. In 994 the coefficient between countryside and city habitants was at 0.434. This makes the floating population (those coming from rural areas) to engage in property criminal activities. In addition, the floating immigrants loose traditional support from their families when they move to cities even before they stabilize hence they engage in criminality to earn living.
Unlike the Chinese society, the Caribbean region was characterized by gang life. Since the end of civil war in Nicaragua crime violence has dominated the streets. Statistics show that crime rate has risen by 10%. This rise is attributed to tendency of criminals to kill their targets even for petty property like watches and cloths (Agozino, Bowling,Ward, and St. Bernard, 2009).
The level of distrust among neighbors and friends has risen to the extent that one cannot wear expensive clothing, shoes, and rings outside the house. The level of individualism has risen in fact; it is as if no one does anything for the common good of society. The youths have joined gangs to earn living due to believe of orthodox ways of earning living as well as high levels of unemployment. These gangs engage in all levels of crimes from pick pocketing to armed robbery. The gangs also fight each other in an attempt to fight for superiority in the region. This criminality has increased over years despite the demilitarization and democratization of Central America (Christopher, 2002),
These gangs are mainly compassed by youths from low social economic status. Such youths have low level of education and this makes them to lack the ability to climb economic ladder in any formal way. Therefore, ‘gun for rent market’ accounts for large proportion of total transactions in the country.
Chinese social control
The liberalization of market, relaxation of migration laws and increasing population formed the baseline of changes in economic and social order in china. These changes transformed the society in a manner which opened the door for criminality. In addition, The Confucius philosophy was replaced by western values. This made the central government to assume more power to counter the rapid increasing criminality (LiU, Messne, & Zhang, 2001).
On the other hand, in many Caribbean countries there exists a strong link between crimes and drugs. The drug cartels are prominent source of income. In the black market guns are also trade because they enforce contracts in the illicit market. The increased gun trade has made illegal fire arms to spread even outside the drug market and this has fueled violence conflict (Agozino, Bowling,Ward, and St. Bernard, 2009).
Economics and status competition in the society have become deadly due to the illegal fire arms. Therefore, tit for tat shootings and killings has fueled the violent criminal activities across the region. It has been established that the numerous sea and air routes connecting Caribbean countries with North America, South America, Africa and Europe used to smuggle drugs are also used for gun trade. However, more guns are traded via different routes. For example, in Paurilo Rico 60% of drugs originate from Florida. This is because Florida is a state with relaxed gun regulations. In addition, Fishermen have established more routes in the sea where they meet in open water to batter drugs for AK47s.
The government attempts to fight drugs have not yielded any fruits and this has made it impossible to fight the illegal gun trade because the two are interlinked. Generally, security enforcers have been experiencing increased gun trade as more and more rules are passed to counter drug trade in the region. This is because guns are needed to enforced contracts of the increasingly illegal drug trade (Dennis , 2002).
In Jamaica the level of criminality is very high. Research shows that the increased criminality has been attributed to military type weapons among the civilians and illegal paramilitary training. It is also probable that the same scenario is in Trinidad and Tobago. This is because the murder rate in the islands has doubled since 2002. In fact, data shows that the wounding on firearms has been declining as murder cases rise. Researchers have attributed this to changing lethality of weapons and probably paramilitary training.
Governments attempt to fight criminality
In Caribbean the most notable attempt by the government to fight criminality has been to pass laws aimed at legislating guns. The legislation to allow civilians to own fire arms have been passed in an attempt to counter illicit gun trade. However, these legislations have little impact on taming crime because many people who engage in criminal activities rarely use legal fire arms (Dennis , 2002).
On the other hand, the Chinese government has been more vigorous in fighting crime. The government passed several legislations to replace the Confucius legal code. It even came up with a document by the name ‘Decision on strengthening the comprehensive treatment of social order’’ stating rules and regulations of taming the increasing criminality. The government has also been using campaigns to suppress criminality for example, the ‘six evil campaign’ was aimed at countering fraud and ‘sever strike’ was aimed at countering street crime. These campaigns offer leniency to people who turn themselves in while those who fail face excessive police force. Therefore, the campaigns encourage citizen to confess their guilty, guilty of others and to eradicate deviance behavior(LiU, Messne, & Zhang, 2001).
The police have power to administer punishment, and exclusively handle minor acts of law infringements. However, the police powers are expanded during anticrime campaign periods. Those who are taken to court and found guilty are imprisonment. In the prison they are forced to work for six days a week in total silence. In addition to the work, corporal punishment is administered.
In china increased criminality has been associated with liberalization of market and relaxation of migration rules. This has increased the influx of people in cities and adoption of western values such as individualism. The increased individualism is attributed to increased consumerism and money worship. On the other hand, in Caribbean region criminality is fueled by illicit drug and gun trade across the region. Drug cartels have established themselves to the extent of overwhelming the authorities’ capabilities. In both countries criminality is associated with economic inequalities which exist in society. This is because majority of criminal activities are carried out by people from low social economic background. In china the government has been more effective in fighting criminality through campaigns which advocate for criminals to give in and people to avoid deviant behavior than in Caribbean.
Agozino, B., Bowling, B., Ward, E., and St. Bernard, G. (2009). Guns, Crime and Social Order in the West Indies. Criminology and Criminal Justice, 9(3), 287-305.
Christoper, C. (2002), carrebian violent and Garrison Communities in Jamaica. Monroe college: king graduate school
Dennis , R. (2002). ‘We live in a state of siege’ violence, crime and drugs in post- conflict urban Nicaragua. London school of economics and political science
IU, J., Messne, s., & Zhang, L. (2001). Changing Crime and Social Control in China (9780313316524 ed.). Connecticut: Greenwood Press.
IU, J., Messne, s., & Zhang, L. (2001). Changing Crime and Social Control in China (9780313316524 ed.). Connecticut: Greenwood Press.