Violence And Fear Created By Gangs Criminology Essay

The term “ pack ” has instilled fright in communities and vicinities for decennaries. This fright is created by the force exhibited by prison, street and bike packs. The media shows and tells the populace that no 1 is safe and anyone at anytime could go a victim in the pack wars. This portraiture in the media causes parents, vicinities and communities to close down in the battle against packs. Gangs are able to last and boom off of this fright created non merely by their actions but by the media every bit good. Knowledge is power in the battle against packs every bit good as the bar of rank. Should we be every bit concerned as this fright has lead us to be?

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Gangs: Should We Be Concerned?

A pack is defined as a “ group of persons that work or move together, peculiarly felons or juvenile delinquents ” ( Agnes, 2003, p.268 ) . A mobster is defined as a “ member of a pack ” ( Agnes, 2003, p.268 ) . The term mobster was foremost used in the 1890 ‘s to label the Chicago hoods who used force and other illegal methods to do certain their favourite campaigners for political office were elected ( Blackwood, 2002 ) . The period that is most associated with mobsters is the 1920 ‘s. This is the period that the term mobster was used to besides include felons such as moonshiners, kidnapers, bank robbers, blackmailers and hit work forces. The term has maintained popularity over the old ages and is still used to label members of a pack.

Gangs in the 1920 ‘s and packs now are similar in that both gained control of an illegal market. The spirits trade was controlled in the 1920 ‘s during Prohibition and the drug trade is presently controlled by packs ( Blackwood, 2002 ) . This control of an illegal market besides brings apprehensions, force, arms and money. Bing a portion of a pack so was about doing money and today that is still the end. Money, nevertheless, is merely one factor in the desire to go a mobster.

Gangs formed before the 1980 ‘s fit the traditional definition of a pack. These packs began supporting sod, nevertheless, grew into big organisations that became to a great extent involved in the drug trade and other condemnable activity. Fists, ironss and knives that were used in earlier packs were replaced with automatic pieces and thrust by shots. The mean size of a traditional pack is one 100 and 80 members and has distinguishable construction and organisation ( Sonder, 1996 ) .

Many metropoliss such as Washington, D.C. and Philadelphia have a few of the larger organized packs and even more of the slackly organized packs. These packs are considered “ neighborhood packs. ” The newer, smaller packs tend to be less involved with drugs and force. These smaller packs are more diverse and tend to hold white, female, and even in-between category members. Some of these packs take names similar to the nationally known packs and take part in graffito, etc. but may non be excessively violent or to a great extent involved in drug gross revenues. Parents, constabulary, and the community still necessitate to be argus-eyed in battling these packs as there is a possibility of more force and condemnable activity over clip ( Barbour, 2006 ) .

The statistics that back up the pack job are oculus gap. There were over 20 one 1000 packs identified

in the United States and over seven hundred 30 one 1000 pack members identified in 2002. In that same twelvemonth, one thousand two hundred and thirty two homicides were attributed to gang activity ( Barbour, 2006 ) .

The cultural makeup of pack members is diverse. Forty nine per centum are Latino, thirty four are black, 10 per centum are white, six per centum are Asiatic, and one per centum is other ( Barbour, 2006 ) . There are more Hispanic packs, which include Hispanic, due to in-migration, the demand for fast money and the perceptual experience that there is a demand for protection from other packs.

Gang experts advise there are multiple grounds persons join packs. These grounds include but are non

limited to peer force per unit area, self esteem issues, poorness, hankering for exhilaration, endurance, the privation to do fast money, addition

power, and attract members of the opposite sex. The chief ground an person joins a pack is to experience a sense of belonging and protection ( Barbour, 2006 ) .

Many juveniles join packs due to an unstable household environment that usually provides a sense of belonging and protection. For these juveniles, a pack is their household and serves the intent of a traditional household ( Barbour, 2006 ) . For others, it is a rite of transition to fall in the same pack as their household members are already in. In the latter state of affairs, packs

and the life style of the pack is merely a manner of life for these juveniles ( Barbour, 2006 ) . Juveniles enter the pack early and get down perpetrating offenses instantly.

Power and entitlement are other factors that encourage pack rank. Gang members are frequently persons with high aspirations who have a phantasy about doing fast money and deriving expensive autos and brassy jewellery ( Sonder, 1996 ) . Obtaining these points seems out of range and would take excessively long to accomplish so gang life seems the lone alternate. Perpetrating offense appears to be an easier method to obtain the phantasy of high accomplishment ( Sonder, 1996 ) .

Gangs are a conducive factor in juveniles perpetrating violent offenses in both little and big metropoliss. Members of packs are relocating from urban countries to suburban countries. This move expands the pack ‘s control of drug distribution, money, new members, hedging jurisprudence enforcement and other packs ( National Drug Intelligence, 2009 ) .

A survey of delinquent Acts of the Apostless in Rochester, NY showed that pack members accounted for 60 eight per centum of all violent discourtesies committed by juveniles. In Denver, a similar survey reflected 70 nine per centum of all violent discourtesies were attributed to juveniles that were members of a pack. “ Gang related homicides affecting juveniles has increased by more than

50 per centum harmonizing to Professor James Alan Fox, a Northeastern University criminologist ” ( Barbour, 2006, p.17 ) . Those statistics are a representation of juveniles and pack activity. Law enforcement functionaries have reported that 80 per centum of condemnable activity is gang related, affecting both juvenile and grownup members ( National Drug Intelligence, 2009 ) . Equally far as what type of pack a juvenile or grownup becomes a member of depends, as there are several different types of packs.

Harmonizing to the National Gang Intelligence Center of 2009 there are three types of packs. There are street packs, prison packs, and criminal bike packs. Street packs that operate in multi legal powers across the state are a immense menace due to the control of such a big geographical country. Street packs that commit condemnable Acts of the Apostless such as force and drugs are the greatest menace to society. That menace becomes intensified as the street packs migrate from urban countries to suburban and rural countries. Prison packs are a major menace due to the control and influence over the street packs in the community, even from prison.

The construction of prison packs is extremely organized and acts as a condemnable web within the province and local prisons. Members that have been released from prison besides assist in the twenty-four hours to twenty-four hours operations of the prison pack. Released members

by and large return to their community and restart old pack associations. Once old pack associations are resumed, the

member so recruits street gang members to transport out condemnable Acts of the Apostless for the prison pack. Prison packs control the distribution of drugs within the prison but besides in the community in some instances as good ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) .

Outlaw bike packs are besides a public safety menace in the communities where they operate as they take portion in assorted condemnable Acts of the Apostless, often use force, and counter the attempts of jurisprudence enforcement. Some of the condemnable activity criminal bike packs participate in are drug and arms smuggling every bit good as violent offense. Outlaw bike packs are extremely organized and structured. There are ordinances on

rank, behavior, and even condemnable activity. The size of the pack ranges from a individual chapter to 100s of chapters throughout ( National Drug Intelligence, 2009 ) .

The most widely known street and prison packs are the Aryan Brotherhood, La eme ( Mexican Mafia ) , Latin Kings, Gangster Disciples, Texas Syndicate, Crips, Bloods, and MS-13 ( Mara Salvatrucha ) . The most widely known criminal bike packs are the Hell ‘s Angels and Mongols. Fear is the one thing that all of these packs have in common. By seting fright into the community, they are commanding it.

The Aryan Brotherhood originated in 1967 at the San Quentin Prison in California. This pack was originally formed as protection from black captives, nevertheless, it rapidly turned into

a moneymaking condemnable endeavor. Members have a white supremacist, Neo-Nazi outlook ; nevertheless, have a working relationship with Le-eme ( Mexican Mafia ) . Symbols of the Aryan Brotherhood are Shamrock trefoil leaves, Hakenkreuz, dual lightning bolts, initials “ AB ” , and the Numberss “ 666 ” ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) . Members have a deep rooted hatred towards inkinesss and black packs such as the Crips, Bloods, and Gangster Disciples. A violent act must be committed for induction “ Blood in, Blood out ) . There is besides a credo that all members must stay by: “ I will stand by my brother, My brother will come

before all others, My life is forfeited should I neglect my brother, I will honour my brother in peace and war ” ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) . This credo is apparent during condemnable

prosecutions against members, such as the 1 in Santa Ana, California.

In Santa Ana, California one of the largest decease punishment instances was tried and involved four Indo-european members. The test revealed that the Aryan Brotherhood is a ruthless pack that slayings anyone that opposes them, even their ain members. Two of the members convicted were eligible for the decease punishment

due to their portion in telling a race war at a Lewisburg, Pennsylvania prison that resulted in the decease of two black captives. Both members ended up with life without parole alternatively of decease. The same two members responsible for the race war along with another confederate besides murdered another captive in 1989 ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) .

La eme besides known as the Mexican Mafia began in California in 1957. The twenty-four hours to twenty-four hours operations are of a paramilitary construction that includes a president, frailty president,

lieutenants, sergeants, and generals. Under these high ranking functionaries, there are soldiers, providers and associates.

There is a 12 regulation Constitution that must be followed by all members: Membership is for life, all members must be prepared to

putting to death or be killed for the greater good of the pack, every member must be disciplined and work through failings, ne’er allow the pack down, a sponsoring member is wholly responsible for all

actions of the new member and if the member turns out to be a fink the patron must extinguish the new member, when disrespected by any individual, all members must extinguish that individual, maintain a high degree of unity at all times, ne’er speak of la eme concern, each member can show sentiments, each member can form, arm, and support La eme, each member has the right to have on la eme tattoo, and the last regulation is that la eme is

a condemnable endeavor and will take part in any and all condemnable Acts of the Apostless for pecuniary benefit ( Inside prison, 2006 ) . The symbol of the Mexican Mafia is the national symbol of Mexico, which is both an bird of Jove and a serpent on a circle with fires, along with crossed knives ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) . The Mexican Mafia was created as a manner to derive more freedom over the prison underworld which was controlled by Whites. The Italian Mafia was the templet for the creative activity of the Mexican Mafia. Over a short period of clip they began to command the narcotic traffic in the California prison system and develop their ain hallmark ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) .

The Mexican Mafia has a specific mode in which contract slayings are carried out that became their hallmark. The mode

involves nobbling, binding, and muzzling the victim with canal tape prior to seting slugs into the dorsum of the skull. The

organic structure is so wrapped in a cover and disposed of in a distant location. This method was demonstrated in the 1997 robbery on

West Gallic Place that did non travel as planned. Five persons were blindfolded and canal taped so changeable several times in the dorsum of the skull ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) .

Gangster Disciples, besides called Black Gangster Disciples was created in the 1960 ‘s by David Barksdale, leader of the Gonzanto Disciples and Larry Hoover, leader of the Supreme Disciples.

These two groups combined and formed the Black Gangster Disciples. David Barksdale was the leader and Larry Hoover was 2nd in bid. David Barksdale died in 1972 and Larry Hoover took over ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) .

The Black Gangster Disciples use the six pointed star, Star of David, as their symbol. This symbol represents trueness, understanding, cognition, wisdom every bit good as love. Other symbols include an upside down pitchfork and a bosom with wings. Members by and large tattoo themselves with a top chapeau with a staff out of the top which is a pitchfork with the Numberss three, six and zero along with an upside down cross at the underside. Clothing may dwell of the athleticss squad Oakland Raiders and carry a black, gray or white bandanna ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) .

The Gangster Disciples can be found in metropoliss across the United States, nevertheless, Chicago is the location of the leaders and there is a strong presence in the Midwest. In the mid 1990 ‘s a federal undertaking force was formed to look into the engagement of the Gangster Disciples in multiple slayings and drug trafficking. The consequence of the probe found that the pack was doing over one hundred million dollars a twelvemonth in illegal drug gross revenues. Multiple members were convicted and are now functioning life sentences ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) .

Latin Kings foremost came approximately in Chicago in the 1940 ‘s. The Latin Kings pack was created by a few Puerto Rican immigrants as a manner to support and protect themselves from racism and bias. Their motto was that they would lift above racism and bias and organize an organisation of “ Kings. ” After a period of clip, the pack became involved in condemnable activity and even though the first members were Puerto Rican, most members now are Mexican-American. Identifiers include the five point Crown, which means represent love, regard, forfeit, award and obeisance. Colorss of the Latin Kings include xanthous or gold. The caput of the full condemnable organisation is known as the Inca. Latin Kings have chapters besides known as sets in provinces across the state, each coverage to a leader ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) .

The pack known as Texas Syndicate originated in the early 1970s at Folsom Prison in California. It was started as a direct consequence of the formation of other packs in California prisons. Other packs, specifically Mexican Mafia and Aryan Brotherhood, were aiming inmates that were Texas indigens.

The lone symbols noted to place members are tattoos with “ TS ” someplace in the design. Some of these tattoos require intense observation in order to turn up the “ TS ” . The tattoos are by and large located on the dorsum of the right forearm, nevertheless,

have been located on the outside calf country, cervix and thorax ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) . The chief condemnable activities Texas Syndicate is involved in are drug trafficking, extortion, and internal violent subject of members. Members in prison have

communicating methods with outside members through smuggled cell phones and coded messages.

The Crips were started in 1969 in Los Angelos as a street pack by Raymond Washington and Stanley Tookie Williams. This pack has received the repute on being highly violent and aggressive. Stanley Tookie Williams faced the decease punishment in San Quentin State Prison on December 13, 2005. He received the

decease punishment after being convicted of slaying four persons during a robbery by hiting them to decease with a scattergun in Southern California in 1970. Besides, in 1979 Raymond Washington was murdered.

The name “ Crip ” has different theories as to where the name really came from. One theory is that a adult female from the lodging undertakings filed a constabulary study on two adolescents for stealing. One of the adolescents was Raymond Williams. The description of one of the adolescents was “ crip with a stick ” intending a handicapped individual with a cane. Another theory is that the name came from “ Crib, ” from the Baby Avenue pack in the 1960 ‘s. The Baby Avenue gang finally became known as the Avenue Cribs as they

were located in the Central Avenue, Los Angeles country ( Inside Prison, 2006 ) .

Identifiers of the Crips pack are the colourss blue, grey, orange, and purple. Handkerchiefs or vesture by and large reflect those colourss. Other identifiers are the six pointed Star of David, the missive B crossed out as the pack “ Bloods ” is their challenger. Specific vesture picks can include tennis places, ramble oning suits or athleticss squads reflecting Los Angeles squads ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) . British Knight tennis places are popular due to the “ B ” and “ K ” which represents Blood Killer. Communication between members is facilitated through manus marks, codifications, and graffiti. Although there is no Fundamental law for the pack there is a book of cognition that outlines all regulations and ordinances for the pack.

The Crips pack is involved in condemnable activity such as drug gross revenues every bit good as trafficking, violent robberies and burglaries. Members of the Crips have been located in every metropolis of the United States and even in a few foreign states. Their competition with the Bloods frequently consequences in bloodshed and/or slaying.

The street pack known as Bloods was started in the 1960 ‘s. Neighborhood protection and as a force to battle the Crips were grounds the pack was created. Crips were going excessively powerful as they were allying with other street packs.

African American work forces called each other “ Bloods ” in the Vietnam War and that is where the name came from. Identifiers of the pack include a five point star and the colour ruddy. Clothing picks tend to be athleticss squads such as the Chicago Bulls, Philadelphia Phillies, and San Francisco 49ers ( Know Gangs, n.d. ) . The Bloods are similar to the Crips in that there is no Constitution ; nevertheless, there is a book of cognition that outlines regulations and ordinances of the pack.

The organisational construction for the Bloods is as follows: the first superior, this individual is in charge of twenty-four hours to

twenty-four hours operations of the set and in charge of subject. The following in charge is the 2nd higher-up who assists the first higher-up. The curate of information and defence are following and they are

responsible for giving information and schemes to the Superiors. Head of security grips obtaining arms for the set. The dominating officer is in charge of passing down orders per the higher-ups. Below those officers there is a captain, who gives information to the lieutenant. The lieutenant ensures orders are carried out and soldiers carry out orders.

In the early 1980 ‘s MS-13, besides known as Mara Salvatrucha, was created. After go forthing the decease squads of El Salvador, a figure of Salvadorian immigrants settled in California and

created MS-13. MS-13 was created as protection against rival Mexican packs and is one of the most violent packs in the United

States. This pack is a extremely organized, paramilitary one with some members officially belonging to the Salvadorian guerilla forces. Members are by and large to a great extent tattooed, can be identified by bluish and black bandanna every bit good as specific

tattoos of MS-13. Phrases that are specific to Ms-13 are “ La Mara ” which means packs, “ Salva ” which means Salvadorian,

“ trucha ” which means expression out, and Eme Ese which means MS ( Gang Awareness, n.d. ) .

The bike pack, Hell ‘s Angels, began in Fontana, California in 1948. “ Hell ‘s Angels ” was a term coined for bomber squadrons in World War I and II. Hell ‘s Angels have been linked to condemnable activity such as drug trafficking, particularly

Methedrines, assaults, arm ownership, and even slaying. The most ill-famed secret plan that surrounds this pack are the allegations that they plotted to kill sway star Mick Jagger. Mick Jagger purportedly criticized the Hell ‘s Angels after one of its members killed a adult male at an event in which the pack was in charge of security. The victim pulled a gun and a Hell ‘s Angels member stabbed him. All charges were dropped and it was declared ego defence ( James, 2009 ) . Despite the extended history of the

Hell ‘s Angels, still much is left unknown as what happens at a nine meeting, stays at that place.

Hell ‘s Angels can be identified by their leather or denim jackets with the ruddy and white winged “ decease ‘s caput ” ensignia,

the missive HAMC ( Hell ‘s Angels Motorcycle Club ) , and the figure eighty one ( 8th missive in the alphabet is H and the first missive is A ) . Each member ‘s position can be located on the jacket

by a spot, each specific significance is merely known to members. Hell ‘s Angels besides wear a spot that has “ 1 % ” on it which means

they are portion of the one per centum that are willing to make anything, legal or illegal to carry through their ends.

Members have route names which are the lone manner they are known to other members ( James, 2009 ) . The Hell ‘s Angels are challengers with the bike gang The Mongols.

The Mongols are besides a bike pack that wears the “ 1 % ” spot and is considered really unsafe. The pack consists of largely Latin and Latino members as the pack was created due to the Hell ‘s Angel ‘s non leting Latino members ( Mongols Motorcycle Gang, 2008 ) . Other names the pack goes by is the Mongol Brotherhood or Mongol Nation. The central office is located in California, nevertheless, there are chapters all over the United States, Canada, overseas and Mexico.

The Mongols have been linked and charged in violent organized condemnable activity. In 2008 a three twelvemonth probe over several provinces ended with at least 30 eight Mongol bike pack members being arrested. The charges included slaying, attempted slaying, assault, every bit good as gun and arms charges ( Mongols Motorcycle Gang, 2008 ) .

Harmonizing to the 2008 National Drug Intelligence Center there are over 20 thousand packs that have about one

million members that are reprehensively active in all 50 provinces of the United States and the District of Columbia. Aside from the nationally recognized packs, there are besides neighborhood “ coteries, ” “ crews, ” or posses. ” These groups normally consist of merely 20 to twenty five members and are slackly structured. There is less graffiti, manus marks, and colourss identified with them. The doctrine is similar to the national packs: “ Live by the vicinity, dice by the vicinity ( Barbour, p.18 ) .

Gangs are non merely in the streets, they are besides in the schools. Public and private schools are both faced with the world that packs are in the schools. In 1994, a study stated

that decision makers of schools with an enrollment figure of more than twenty five 1000s and principals of urban schools reported an addition in pack involved incidents. Even one in

four simple principals referenced an addition in pack related incidents ( Kopka, 1997 ) . In a survey of six thousand 6th graders in 11 metropoliss, eleven per centum advised they were presently gang members and 17 per centum advised they belonged to a pack at one point ( Barbour, 2006 ) . Gangs are going a job in countries that have non been recognized before.

Acknowledging the marks that a juvenile or household member is in a pack can get down with inquiring. If there are still concerns about pack rank, expression for these marks: alteration in behaviour ( becomes defiant ) , grades bead, hooky at school, new associates, calls from unknown persons, money and jewellery appearance, preoccupation with peculiar colourss or athleticss squads,

manus marks, graffito on books or walls, developing monikers, and grounds of drug maltreatment. One of these marks entirely may non be declarative of pack rank, nevertheless, more than one could be declarative of pack rank ( Gang Awareness, n.d. ) .

After parents determine their kid is in a pack it is natural for them to experience choler and even jealousy towards the pack. Feelingss that the kid has been taken from them by the pack are evoked. Parents manage this information otherwise. Family first parents set the state of affairs and the kid foremost in an

effort to reconstruct the nucleus household unit. Saviors minimize their ain answerability and fright. Saviors try to salvage the kid.

The saviors can be successful in that there is household support, which assists the parents in covering with the issue every bit good. Reformers take on the undertaking of salvaging their kid and other kids as good. These parents frequently suppress the nucleus issues of their ain kid. The negators acknowledge that they have contributed to their kid fall ining a pack. These parents tend to react more negatively and deny personal duty of the kid ‘s hapless societal, emotional, and religious good being. The most utmost are the degage parents. These parents merely do non care and decline to prosecute in any effort to take their kid from the pack ( Barbour, 2006 ) . In certain cases,

taking a kid from a pack can be hard and at times require traveling off ( Barbour, 2006 ) .

Parents can learn their kids a critical lesson that can help in the bar of pack engagement. This critical lesson is for a kid to face world. This will learn juveniles to take duty for their actions every bit good as the picks they make ( Barbour, 2006 ) . And there must ever be effects to bad behaviour.

Parents should recognize there is a difference between the behaviour of their kid and the individuality of their kid.

Behavior is what a juvenile does and individuality is who the juvenile is. When learning picks, it must be taught that life

is filled with actions and reactions. Juveniles need to cognize the picks made are in their complete control. Being cognizant of world and confronting it allows kids to hold control over their

picks and assert themselves in a positive mode ( Barbour, 2006 ) .

Most packs are built on the premiss “ Blood In, Blood Out. ” In order to acquire out of a pack, a member must cast blood, or do they? Solutions to acquire out of a pack may non intend “ Blood Out ” . Other suggestions include speaking to high ranking members and showing the involvement to acquire out, inquire for aid from a comparative, guardian or friend, travel to the constabulary, or even go an militant ( Sonder, 1996 ) .

The solution to packs is that communities as a whole must stand together. Far excessively frequently communities have viewed packs as an interior metropolis job, something that would non impact them. Vicinities affected and plagued by packs have been left to support themselves without aid. Now, no vicinity or community is safe. Indiscriminate constabularies expanses in vicinities

hold had a negative consequence on the manner the community positions jurisprudence enforcement. Possible sources refuse to speak and packs prey on immature members that have nowhere else to travel.

Treating the pack issue as a jurisprudence enforcement job is non traveling to work out anything. Along with tough policing, the community must take action and non accept packs in their vicinities. Society has failed to cover suitably with the societal root causes, like fatherless places, which lead to immature work forces seeking male function theoretical accounts. Popular civilization besides sends a message that anarchy is cool as is force whereas instruction and hope are non. To battle packs every member in society dramas a portion ; constabulary, societal workers, the church, friends and household members. Each and every person-in the attitudes that are kept, the picks that are made, and even

points purchased-helps to determine the civilization that must be joined together with the committedness to do communities and vicinities safer ( Barbour, 2006 ) .




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Detroit, MI: Thomason Gale.

Blackwood, G. ( 2002 ) . Gangsters.

New York, NY: Benchmark Books.

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James, R. ( 2009, August 03 ) Hell ‘s Angels.

TIME magazine. Retrieved November 4, 2010 from

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