A 1978 documentary called Scared Straight! was so groundbreaking, it won both an Academy Award and an Emmy.

The filmmakers followed around a group of juvenile delinquents during a visit to a New Jersey prison and met inmates serving life sentences who berated, cussed, screamed, and threatened the kids in order to give them a sense of what everyday life was like when you’re incarcerated.

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It was controversial, yet overall effective.

More programs along the same lines of Scared Straight! followed, including a series that began in 2011 called Beyond Scared Straight.

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We live in a gentler world now when it comes to kids, especially ones at an impressionable age.

The school of thought on how to teach kids has changed over the last four decades as well.

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With an overcrowded prison system, an overwhelmed judicial system, a failing rehabilitation system, and a shrinking budget, keeping kids out of a life of crime through preemptive measures should be paramount, but unfortunately, with such overused and underfunded resources, it’s nearly impossible.

So people have to get creative and take matters into their own hands.

Head over to the next page to see kids meeting with felons…