A problem facing the common citizen regarding this problem is their perception of gangs, how they view gangs and how they think gangs operate. To the average person when they think of a gang, they think of some teenagers smoking on a street corner brandishing knives. And while that’s partially true, it’s very far from the whole truth. When it comes to organized crime, there is no one type of gang, there different types of gangs varying in their size, influence, and how dangerous they are. At the bottom of the food chain is the street gangs consisting of a few dozen members at most and, like the name implies, they
Gangs are not a new problem to the United States. Gangs have often been romanticized in literature and the media with a classic example being “West Side Story”. Americans have long been fascinated with the Mafia, and infamous gangsters such as Al Capone and John Gotti have even been elevated in status as cultural icons. Americans have seen an uprising in “Gangster Rap” since the early 1990’s. Many people tend to think of gangs in America as being made up primarily of young inner-city black males with a small percentage of white males. Americans tend to forget that gangs also include girls, adults, and children. One area that most Americans have not started to look into yet is the influence of the growing number of Hispanic Gangs.
States in 2004” this just supports the statement that it is a huge problem in the United States (Cooper, 2009, p. 1). Unfortunately, the Youth of America and these other countries have been a large demographic of these gangs for many years due to many contributing factors. One criminal factor that initiates gang violence are the overwhelming presence of adolescents and young adults involved with gangs, Celinda Franco states that not only youth participants but whole “youth gangs” have been on the radar for policy makers since the early 1900’s (Cooper, 2009, p. 2). Another factor is the nature of the remorseless and often violent nature of these gang related offenses many gang members act as if they have no conscience and no values, and the fact that a large percentage are “easy to influence” youth doesn’t help the case that most commit gang crimes on a whim. Finally, the fact that most of these gang related offenses that the youth carries out are in poverty stricken neighborhoods that have very poor socioeconomic status, this it is a bad situation that is difficult to escape from because young adults and adolescents do not have the means to move outside this zone and may never attain this goal (Cooper, 2009, p. 3).
Not only are these teenage boys and girls committing heinous violent acts; they participate in drug distribution, prostitution, grand thefts, vandalism, human trafficking, and they themselves often become drug users. Gangs make schools unsafe in many areas and increase the risk of other children becoming involved in the gangs. Parents who live in the inner-cities are worried daily about the possibility of their children becoming gang members. They must also fret about the possibility of their children being in the wrong place at the wrong time, being caught in a drive by shooting or something of that
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.
Youth gang violence anywhere has a bad reputation and a curious history. During the 1990’s the number of gangs in the U.S. Increased by six times as many as there were in the 1980’s.
Gangs are not a new phenomenon, or a new problem. Gangs have been around for a long time, and will continue to grow and transform throughout the world. I have viewed gangs in a negative manner, and have carried a false misconception of what exactly a gang is. Television and media is partially to blame for society’s view on gangs and gang violence. Today, there are dozens of “reality” television shows about gangs. It is no surprise the information that we take in through television on the topic of gangs is misleading. Gangs can be a problem, especially gangs that are active in violence, and criminality. The problem here is there is no research that suggests that there is a policy that will address the gang problem, or a preventative measure that produces results. Through research, I will define what a gang is, why gangs can be harmful to at risk youth, what prevention programs accomplish, and the efficacy of prevention programs. I will also determine which of prevention programs has the highest level of effectiveness.
In the US, the crime rate has been growing at a high rate and they are estimated to be more than one million, with the majority residing in both California and Los Angeles. Majority of the gang groups are made up of the youth. Most young people join gangs in order to acquire companionship, love, coupled with some forces that can be grouped into social, economic and cultural in nature as they struggle to define themselves and their place
Every city has its problems but for the majority of cities one of their problems is gangs. Everyone has a different stereotype of what they consider to be a gang which makes it difficult to have one set definition of what a gang is. One definition is “young people who spend time in groups of three or more, spend a lot of time in public places, existed for three months or more, engage in delinquent or criminal behavior together in the last 12 months, and has at least one structural feature such as a name or a leader” (Young, Fitzgibbon, and Silverstone, no date). There have been multiple theories that have supported and opposed these arguments on why people join gangs and the risk factors. People join gangs for all sorts of reasons such as a sense of belonging, traditions, coping, money, and protection.
Gangs continue to be a growing problem in the United States. Gangs pose danger not only to society as a whole but to children in particular. According to the Executive Summary: Changing Course prepared by the U.S. Department of Justice and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, “nearly one in 12 young people said they belonged to a gang at some point during their teenage years” (Ritter, Simon, &Mahendra, n.d.). Despite the dangerous and criminal activities that gangs participate in, children as young as 11 and 12 become involved in gangs which makes early prevention absolutely vital.
Gang violence is a very prevalent, and ongoing issue that is ever growing. According to the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth (a nationally representative sample of 9,000 adolescents), 8 percent of the youth surveyed had belonged to a gang at some
The number of gangs in the United States has grown to an estimated 30,000 in 2011 which is up from 20,000 which was the estimated number in 2003 and that number steadily increases today according to the National Gang Center. (Howell 2011) states that there has become a pervasive problem in the United States due to an estimated 782,500 gang members in these 30,000 gangs and their activities. These problem have increased significantly from 2002 through 2009 as studies have shown. Our country has shown a decline in violent crimes as a whole in recent years but gang violence has not changed with these numbers and in some of the larger cities such as Chicago and Los Angeles the percentage of homicides has increased. In this paper I will take a look at one agency, the Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency prevention and look closely at the programs they have to combat against this gang violence and if these programs are indeed successful in their endeavor.
Gangs are a serious and persistent problem within society. According to the National Youth Gang Survey, “from 2002 to 2010, the estimated number of youth gangs increased by nearly 35 percent (from 21,800 to 29,400)” (Egley and Howell, 2012). In addition, “one-third of cities, towns and rural counties reported gang problems in 2010” (Egley and Howell, 2012).
No guardian might want to envision their children managing weapons or being undermined by them. These violence’s affects each child separately and their families as well. These groups enlist various diverse people for some reasons, such as bribery, family traditions, or even bullying. Although, numerous children feel like they must be a member of it yet there are numerous assets out in this world to keep them from trusting so. Gang violence has been a problem in society for several of years and is a growing problem each and every day. American youth becoming involved in gangs is not a new phenomenon. The first documented youth gang was in the late 1700s in New York, so gangs have been part of American culture for well over two centuries (Arinde, 2006, p. 34). Most of the youth who get involved with gangs come from poor neighborhoods in large cities such as New York, Chicago, Los Angeles, etc. Seals (2009) expresses the general consensus on gangs thus: Gangs of aggressive and violent young offenders, terrorize neighborhoods in more than three-quarters of American large cities (Snyder & Sickmund, 2006). These collectivities attract only a third of high-risk youth, but their members account to about 80% of the serious delinquencies among minors (ibid.). Thus, although juvenile violence and crime can be linked to inferior socioeconomic conditions and racial issues, it is clear that gangs nurture young offenders towards lives of
Gang related violence and crimes have become an omnipresent problem in the United States , specifically in urban cities. “All 50 states and the District of Columbia report gang problems, and reports have increased for 5 of the past 7 years” (ncjrs.gov). Street gangs in the U.S. first commenced with immigrants from Italy related to the mafia.They became more popular between the 20’s -30’s. Later in the 1950’s and 60’s , other immigrants, “Hispanics, Asians and African Americans began banding together to form gangs” (teenviolence.com). Underprivileged youth across the nation also began to follow the trend. About 10 to 20 years later, national gang alliances emerged and dispersed all over urban cities across the country. Youth violence between