Two forum responses about criminal justice, law homework help

I need two forum responses in APA format, 350 words each. The topic is research in criminal justice. These are responses to other students on a specific topic. They require peer reviewed references. Below is the two posts that need responses:

Post 1:

Gun Buyback Effectiveness

Many communities seek to remove guns—whether lawfully owned or unlawfully possessed—from being easily accessible to criminals, potential criminals, and people ill-suited to possessing them (such as someone so elderly or infirm that they are not capable of preventing it from being stolen or mishandled by juveniles). To encourage the disposal of guns, they offer gun buy back programs where guns are literally bought back from community members, exchanging the firearms for either cash, gift cards, or some other type of incentive. Additionally, the programs often guarantee that no records will be kept (Braga & Wintemute, 2013). Sometimes the program offers amnesty from prosecution for guns turned in that are illegal to own. While the programs seem like a win for everyone, there is no guarantee that they work. Braga and Wintemute conducted a study in 2013 in hopes of analyzing and improving the effectiveness of such gun buyback programs. The authors studied a buyback program in Boston, with two time frames during which the Boston Police Department carried such programs: 1993-94 and 2006. The earlier program disbursed fifty dollars per gun; the later program offered two hundred dollar Target gift cards for each handgun. The later program also verified Bostonian residency, added drop off locations other than police stations, and increased the public awareness campaign promoting the program. The researchers examined the rates of fatal and nonfatal shootings in the years after the 2006 program, and noted a steady decline in shootings. However, the authors concede that “it is not possible to determine the independent gun violence reduction effects of the gun buyback program” in relation to two other gun violence programs that the city launched soon after the buyback program (Braga & Wintemute, p. 670). Nonetheless, the authors note that despite the statistical shortcomings regarding the ability of buyback programs to significantly reduce shootings, there are several external benefits to the programs. These benefits could include “mobilizing communities, promoting awareness of gun violence and youth violence, providing safe-disposal opportunities, and changing public views toward firearms” (Braga & Wintemute, p. 670). Therefore, they conclude that while the shooting statistics alone do not justify continuation of gun buyback programs. However, if (and only if) further research confirms the ability of the program to achieve the other goals of the program, such buyback programs could become effective tools to enhance public safety.

The Australian Buyback

In 1996 there was a tragic mass shooting in Tasmania, Australia. Twelve days later, the Australian government passed into law the National Firearms Agreement and Buyback Program. The law included several provisions, including a temporary firearm buyback program, a national firearm registry, a 28-day waiting period, and increased regulation on firearms licenses (Ramzy, Innis & Boehler, 2015). The researchers note that such gun laws may “appear to be a logical and sensible policy that helps to placate the public’s fears” (Suardi & Lee, 2010, p. 76), but as any researcher knows: the answer which seems logical might not always be right. The researchers obtained data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics related to causes of death, which included firearm and non-firearm homicides and suicides. They model the data using an Auto-regression and Integrated Moving Average model (Suardi & Lee, p. 68). They control for two confounding variables, which are the size of the police force and the rates of incarceration (Suardi & Lee, p. 76). The researchers incorporate a trimming factor, which refers to “how far into the sample one starts looking for a break and how close to the end of the sample one stops looking” (Suardi & Lee, p. 72). The trimming factor they chose was five percent, which seems to be an appropriate amount. Additionally, they utilize the methods of previous researchers by incorporating tests to test for one, and then several, structural breaks. The researchers find that “there is little evidence to suggest that it had any significant effects on firearm homicides and suicides” (Suardi & Lee, p. 76). In conclusion, although it appears on its face to be a reasonable and effective program, statistical scientific study indicates that no significant reductions of firearms deaths occur. Therefore, absent such effects, it does not seem that—at least in Australia—such programs are justified in their continuance. However, after a mass shooting at Monash University in 2002, a similar program was in during the following year. In a similar manner, politicians recently announced they will conduct another buyback program sometime in mid-2017. Clearly, the finding of the scientific community reside in a very different realm of discussion than what is expedient from a political perspective. Nevertheless, the finding remains that gun buyback programs are not an efficient means to lower the rates of firearm fatalities.


Braga, A. A., & Wintemute, G. J. (2013). Improving the potential effectiveness of gun buyback programs. American Journal of Preventive Medicine, 45(5), 668-671. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2013.08.002

Ramzy, A., Innis, M., & Boehler, P. (2015, December 4). How a Conservative-Led Australia Ended Mass Killings. The New York Times. Retrieved from…

Suardi, S., & Lee, W. (2010). the australian firearms buyback and its effect on gun deaths. Contemporary Economic Policy, 28(1), 65-79. doi:10.1111/j.1465-7287.2009.00165.x

Post 2:

Program 1

Fighting Back is a community-based program aimed at combating the proliferation of drugs in neighborhoods. The program was designed with the hope to reduce interest in drugs and alcohol. The implementation of this program was an effort to consolidate other community-based programs into one with the hopes of making a community-wide drug intervention system. Strength in numbers is the theory behind combining the programs. Saxe 1997 states, Fighting Back focused on changing the environments that promote and sustain the demand for alcohol and other drugs (AOD). Since the environment affects AOD use in multiple ways, the implicit theory is that an entire community must organize and collaborate to address the problem (p. 358).

Data collected from various sources included surveys, community indicators, ethnographic and participant observation studies as well as information management systems to track implementation (Saxe, 1997). To assess changes in patterns of alcohol and drug use, random digit dial telephone surveys were conducted. The study was conducted during the spring of 1995, reaching nearly 14,000 respondents of ranging ages. An assessment of the community response to the implementation of the program utilized both quantitative and qualitative collection methods.

The effects of the program were measured, with hierarchical linear models (HLM) and Empirical Bayes (EB). The results established there was greater variability between site-groups than between Fighting Back sites and their comparisons. This conclusion found that each target site was generally like its set of comparison sites, although the sets of sites varied. Second, the status of a site as Fighting Back or control was not a significant predictor of any of the dependent variables. The overall conclusion found Fighting Back had no effect at both the global and the local level (Saxe, 1997).

The article was written in the early stages of implementation of the program and indicated that some sites struggled to convince local constituents to buy into the program. Given the data presented in the article, conflict resolution methods would have to be implemented to resolve issues. We believe that this initial hesitation delayed potential benefits consolidation of programs would yield. By consolidating community-based programs, a minimization of overlap and wasteful spending would occur. Therefore, over time communities would take advantage of the strategies the fighting back program establishes.

Program 2

Two epidemics of the 1980s caused the United States to implement D.A.R.E. and syringe exchange programs. The infusion of crack cocaine led to the intensification of the war on drugs with a zero tolerance approach to illegal drug activity. D.A.R.E. integrated law enforcement and education agencies, introduced children and youths to police officers and, today, provides security through officers who also serve as school resource officers. In response to AIDS/ HIV breakout, the syringe exchange programs were intended to reduce the transmission of HIV among injection drug users (IDUs). The premise being an old needle could be traded for new, sterile needles to reduce HIV transmission among IDUs (Des Jarlais, 2006).

The D.A.R.E program received widespread circulation despite criticism. In 1994, the effectiveness of the program was called into question. The evaluation showed D.A.R.E. to have no long term positive effect on drug prevention. Des Jarlais 2006 found that there has not been a review of research studies on D.A.R.E. that has concluded the curricula as effective in reducing illicit drug use among school-aged children and youths (p. 1355). As a result, funding for the D.A.R.E. program has been significantly reduced.

By 1985, there was a consensus that multi-person use of needles and syringes was contributing to the spread of AIDS and that there were already large numbers of HIV-infected IDUs. As a result, a variety of programs for reducing HIV transmission among IDUs were developed, the most prominent being syringe exchange.

Evaluation research has played a critical role in the diffusion of needle exchange programs. The evaluations were action studies in the context of ongoing epidemics rather than randomized clinical trials. A variety of research designs were used, including before and after comparisons, case–control studies, and mathematical modeling. Outcome measures typically included observation/counting of syringes exchanged and self-reported risk behavior (Jarlais, 2006).

Zero tolerance or one size fits all problem solving approach is an ineffective way to address drug use. Addiction is a disease that affects individuals differently and from all walks of life. Therefore, approaches to combat the issue needs to take into account the individual stricken. The D.A.R.E program as implemented does not justify the continuance in its current form. Public opinion on certain illicit drugs such as marijuana both for medicinal and recreational use have changed. Modernization of the program that mirrors popular public opinion as well as address current issues is needed to justify existence.


Saxe, L., Reber, E., Hallfors, D., Kadushin, C., Jones, D., Rindskopf, D., & Beveridge, A. (1997). Think globally, act locally: Assessing the impact of community-based substance abuse prevention. Evaluation and Program Planning, 20(3), 357-366. doi:10.1016/s0149-7189(97)00015-3

Des Jarlais, D. C., Sloboda, Z., Friedman, S. R., Tempalski, B., McKnight, C., & Braine, N. (2006). Diffusion of the D.A.R.E and Syringe Exchange Programs. American Journal of Public Health, 96(8), 1354–1358.

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