Defining gangs have been compared to packs, teams, and groups. Participants of gangs do not necessarily commit violent acts or commence in illegal matters. The National Gang Center has come to a consensus on defining gangs with the commonalities of three or more members between the ages of 12 through 24, shared identity, recognized by others as a gang or crew, has levels of organization, and usually involved in criminal activities (Shelden, Tracy, Brown, 2013). Some gangs are excluded from this definition due to not proportionate with their usual activities. Overall, we can consider gangs to be founded when members share similar characteristics and establish a symbol to represent their livelihood.
There are many definitions for what a gang is. According to The National Gang Center website, one definition of a gang is a group of youngsters or adolescents who associate closely, often exclusively, for social reasons, especially a group engaging in delinquent behavior such as a gang of thieves. Some factors that make a gang a gang are that the group has three or more members, generally aged 12–24, the members share an identity, typically linked to a name, and often other symbols. The members view themselves as a gang, and they are recognized by others as a gang. The group has some permanence and a degree of organization and the group is involved in an elevated level
The problem of classifying gangs has interested both sociologists and law enforcement. For the purpose of law enforcement, a gang is generally defined as an organized group among the members of which there is well-designed communication. This paper evaluates classification schemes from current research for gangs. The objective is to discover the issues and problems in creating classifications for gangs including a definition which delineates what constitutes a gang and differentiates it from other social and sports groups. The paper also compares approaches to classifications of gangs and evaluates how these classifications provide specific insights or information about gangs in a community.
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.
A gang is defined as a group of individuals with the same objective that are bound together by a bond of trust. The majority of gangs are
“Gangs have morphed from social organizations into full-fledged criminal enterprises” (Thomas, 2009, para 5). Gangs are highly sophisticated and more dangerous then ever. The number one reason to join a gang is money; and 95 percent of gangs profit comes from drug dealing
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.
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.
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
In this case joining a gang will qualify as the guidance within peers and themselves. However, there are many different types of gangs, but most gangs lead to destructive paths which includes negative impacts and influences. The term gang can be defined as a group of people with mutual interests who gather together for social reasons. Most people in a gang are of youth and adolescent age. Seeing how some youth can be emotionally unstable may feel the need of comfort with others who are just as the same. Negative unstable behavior with others can create destructive outcomes which will lead probably to a road of crime.
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 Social Work Dictionary defines a social problem as “a condition among people leading to behaviors that violate some people’s values and norms and cause emotional or economic suffering”. The above definition accurately describes the social problem that gangs are, and their impact on a community. People who live in gang infested neighborhoods live daily with fears of losing their lives and the lives of loved ones. That fear, along with the fear that their family members will join the gang, or that they will be physically harmed in some way by the gang. They may exhibit many emotional, psychological and physical problems that people who don’t live in gang infested neighborhoods do not. Since before the 1940’s law enforcement and others have attempted to put a stop to gangs. These solutions usually hampered gang activity but didn’t eradicate it. Gangs evolve their practices over time to adjust to law enforcement tactics. Today gangs are involved in sex trafficking rather than drug dealing. Sex trafficking is easier to hide, more profitable and has less legal ramifications.
Criminal gangs are there to rule, they have been there in every community for a long time. Gang's intentions are to commit crimes. Gang leaders oversee extortion, order killings or smuggle drugs. This paper studies gang formation, why individuals join gangs and the negative influence gangs have to the society and the economy. The study focuses on some of the prominent gangs in the world today; it explains the activities of the Russian mafia and other gangs. This paper explains power struggles within gangs and gives out recommendations to solve problems associated with gang operations. This paper puts into perspective a study on factors influencing gang membership; the study employs personal interviews as a method, causal research design and ordinal scale of measurement. Prisoners in California state prison are the sample population. Structured proxy question are used, and observation to study an individual's race. The study focuses male prison gang members. Findings from the study indicate that the less educated an individual is the likely for one join a gang, from the study it is evident that gang members feel disregarded when formulating policies, it is clear that race is not a factor to gang membership and that most of the gang members come from dysfunctional families.