The Devils Playground

Essay by vrtwbCollege, UndergraduateA+, October 2014

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Victoria Rhodes

Dr. Dana Carson

Theories of Crime

1 April, 2014

"The Devil's Playground"

People of the Amish religion (founded by Jacob Amman) are known for their devout faith, dedication to manual labor, man-made carpentry, and extremely modest lifestyles. The Amish have a strong work ethic and believe that life is not to be easy. They view any type of vanity or higher education as grounds for the development of pride. The Amish adhere to a strict policy of having no electronic stimuli, or motorized vehicles, for they feel that these items negatively impact personal relationships. Women wear matronly dresses and are not permitted to wear pants. The Amish prefer to not associate themselves with the rest of society ("The English"), for they feel the outside world is "the devil's playground." Although their practices may not conform to societal norms, the Amish seem collectively happy with their lifestyle. Due to their "innocent" reputation and way of life, Amish adolescents are unlikely to participate in delinquent behaviors…Right?

While Amish adolescents may be happy with their modest lifestyles, and are disassociated from society, many of them long to experience life on the "outside."

A short term traditional Amish event called "Rumspringa" ("running around") gives Amish adolescents a chance to live life on the outside. Many Amish adolescents look forward to this tradition, and some even view it as the highlight of their life. Most Amish teens view Rumspringa as an opportunity to go out into the world, get drunk, do drugs, party, and then return home. Despite the partying that is associated with Rumspringa, during this time, the adolescent must make a choice: Whether to officially join the Amish Church (baptism) or integrate themselves into society and live life with "The English." While most Amish teens decide to return...