Gang incitation’s and gun violence are highest among African American youth. One study reported that African-Americans, future and current gang members, are most likely to own a gun. Gang-related homicides increased with the use of firearms, gang activities becoming more violent to include drug-related activities. Many of these young kids are often striving for respect from there fellow gang members and rivals so they are the ones often comminuting the crimes. They want to pay their tribute to the OG (original gangster) the problem with this is that at such a young age they don’t know how to react to a certain situation so they try to resolve everything with gun
From the outside looking in, many would few gangs as a tight knit, criminal enterprise that causes violence and problems for the community. They believe that their violence and feuds are with rival gangs. In reality, gang members fight against members of the same gang, they are not organized in their structure and many join gangs to meet some psychological or emotional
Gangs have been a growing issue across the United States for many decades now. Youth gang violence may have started around the ‘50s, but did not become a serious issue until the ‘80s and from there went through a downward spiral in some cities like downtown Los Angeles, which was where the notorious Bloods and Crips gangs both started. First, let’s simply define a gang as a group of people, mostly men ranging for ages 14-30, who claim territory and use it to make money for themselves and their neighborhood through illegal activities such as trafficking drugs and weapons. There are many reasons and components that are factored in when conducting research to hypothesize “why do people join gangs?” That is why it is necessary to compare and contrast all the social, biological, psychological, developmental, and substance abuse aspects and relate it to joining a gang. It is also important to touch base on the differences between males and females that join gangs, such as power differentials, social learning differences and social stratification differences.
Gang involvement and its associated violent crime have become a rapidly growing problem for the United States. Generally, gangs consist of young people of the same ethnic, racial, and economic background. Usually of a low socio-economic status, these gangs engage in illegal money making activities and intimidate their neighborhoods and rival gangs with violent crimes and victimization. Gang members exemplify a high value for group loyalty and sacrifice.
Gangs originated naturally during the adolescent years of a child. They started from small play groups that eventually found themselves in conflict with other small groups of youth. Due to the conflict between the two small groups of youth it became a part of a child’s mind set to come together as a gang and protect their rights and satisfy the needs that their environment and families couldn’t provide. There are about 24,500 gangs in the U.S and out of those gangs 40% of them are juveniles (Hess, Orthmann, Wright, 2013). There are numerous reason why a child would join a gang, and the
Qualitative descriptions suggest that, for many, gang membership represents 104 Journal of Contemporary Criminal Justice / May 2005an opportunity to enhance social capital as a means to cope with a multitude of problems. Although on balance gang life appears to be neither very rewarding nor satisfying (Hagedorn, 1988), identification with the gang is solidified in response to conflict—often with other gangs—as members pursue their individual and collective interests.
Ultimately, these gangs thrive on secrecy and loyalty. Leaders are noticeably different from their followers. They may be older, physically stronger or larger, they commission acts of violence and their leadership qualities elevate a member through the gang hierarchy (CJ institute,
There are many theories that can be applied to gang violence; however there are two theories that focused on gang violence that will be emphasized on in this paper. Differential Opportunity Theory discussed the disadvantage of individuals that do not have equal access to illegitimate opportunities. This theory dealt with the persuasion of young people into the involvement with gangs and contributing to the crimes that could pledge them as a criminal into the network. The theory demonstrates that organized crime has been committed in that specific community. Also with
Gangs are becoming prevalent in today’s society and within our schools. More and more young people are turning to gangs in an attempt to escape their everyday lives and the future, which they perceive as dismal and bleak. They are initially attracted to the prestige and cash flow, which is glamorized by the street gang. Many gangs are actively involved in criminal misconduct, such as drug and gun trafficking, burglaries and homicides. However, street gangs are not just a criminal justice issue, but a social problem, which is triggered by poverty, peer pressure, boredom, despair and lacking a sense of belonging.
The overall theme of the study depicts overall “mechanisms and processes that result in the spread and escalation of gang violence” (Pope, Lovell & Brandl, 2001, p. 160). This was achieved by the author by directing his studies on ‘contagion as an aspect of collective behavior that produces expressive gang violence” researchers of this study did this by focusing on “contagion as an aspect of collective behavior that produces expressive gang violence (Pope, Lovell & Brandl, 2001, p. 161). ‘Contagion’ is defined as ‘subsequent acts of violence caused by an initial act; such acts typically take the form of retaliation” (Pope, Lovell & Brandl, 2001, p. 163). These gang related acts can take the form of games, fights, meeting and sometimes homicide. It can also be said that all gang behavior is committed as a group. It then follows that this behavior can safely be categorized as ‘collective’ or grouped behavior. Often times a designated
Abstract: This review studies in depth research done on street gangs. Social issues have social scientists turning away from including this in their research around this time. Sociological views have been changed dramatically in the past 40 years due to gender and racial studies. Also, women have started to join gangs since America has been changed with woman equality laws passing.
Gangs have direct effects on a society, such as increased levels of crime, violence and murder. Gangs also have long-term or late suggestions in that gang members are more likely to drop out of high school, struggle with unemployment, abuse drugs and alcohol or in end up in jail. These factors not only contribute to the gang members, but they also force taxpayers to pay for welfare and community-assistance programs. Common reasons for the younger generation to join gangs, include trying to find a place where they belong and sharing in mutual desires for safety from family problems or life challenges. Together, the feelings and attitudes among gang members haze them to act violently, often self-contradictory with rival gangs. This violence leads to injury and death of not only members but also of bystanders in the community. High gang activity also causes fear among community members, discourages business activity and obstructs home-value appreciation. Communities, also must pay for higher levels of law enforcement when gangs are prominent.
Gangs thrive on intimidation and publicity, also violence is very common in gangs and is used to maintain its status. Most gangs depend on both individual and group participation. An individual will be pressured by others in the gang to maintain their status. A street gang’s leadership generally depends on who is the toughest, natural leader or who has success to weapons or money. Also, it may be based on who has the best skills for what the gang wants to do at that time.
Though gangs are different from each other all over the world, they all operate under the same premise. Territory, money, drugs, power and respect are almost always the foundation of any criminal organization (LINK 7); the same principles as mafias or mobs, just more savage and less organized about their actions.