Essay about Gang Leader for a Day

1786 WordsFeb 23, 20138 Pages
In the book, Gang Leader for a Day, a rogue sociologist passionately dives into the lives of one of Chicago’s toughest housing projects in an attempt to develop an insight as to how the urban impoverished lived. Throughout the text it becomes clear that a conflict paradigm is being reflected. A conflict society is based on social inequality, in which some individuals benefit and thrive more than others, which tends to lead to conflict and thus change. This is evident both in the housing projects where a gang known as the “Black Kings” take over and also in the surrounding neighborhoods where the more elite citizens, including persons from the authors university, shy away from associating with the nearby poor black nearby public, thus…show more content…
Another flawed institution was the Chicago Housing Authority, which demolished public housing to replace it with recreation (262). Not only did they take away the only homes the poor had, but also ineffectively relocated them to a community where they could thrive. One of the main economic problems that many people, particularly gangs, in Robert Taylor faced was the fact that they didn’t want to trade in their status for entry-level jobs because in many cases, gang leaders made far more than they would have if they worked minimum wage jobs (72). Many of the gang leaders such as J.T. held the false belief that the drug economy was “useful for the community, since it redistributed the drug addict’s money back into the community via the gang’s philanthropy” (115). However, the drug economy is not a stable or lucrative economy compared to your average jobs because it was clearly very hard for people to get ahead in gangs, thus no one ever had a fair shot of earning more money in their life span. Nevertheless, the situation can tend to be a grey area of debate since a lot of the residents did attempt to hold blue-collar jobs but continued to get laid off (60). In this case, the underground economy of drug sales may have been the only choice for residents looking for an income. Another way the gangs play into the economic situation is when there are drive by shootings, in which case parents

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