Gangs in United States

Street gang members are spread through the United States and are not limited to only large cities. These members belong to all types of socioeconomic levels. It is important to understand that active prevention is required from the beginning of a child’s entry into the school system. Gangs can be defined as “a gang can be considered to be a loosely organized group of individuals who collaborate together for social reasons. Modern day gangs now collaborate together for anti-social reasons.

Gangs generally have a leader or group of leaders who issue orders and reap the fruits of the gang’s activities. A gang may also wear their “colors”, wear certain types of clothing, tattoos, brands, or likewise imprint their gang’s name, logo, or other identifying marks on their bodies. Many gangs also adopt certain types of hairstyles and communicate through the use of hand signals and graffiti on walls, streets, school work, and school property”. (http://www. gangwar. com/dynamics. htm) It is interesting to know that it is not illegitimate to be a member of any gang.

There are many guys who are actively involved in various gangs as Webster’s definition. The reasons why gangs are considered as they are generally involved in illegal activities such robberies, drugs trafficking, smuggling, illegal weapon trade, etc. – they do these activities to run their organization and to get fame on the streets. Historical Background “Gangs have existed in the United States for over 200 years. It all started when the first immigrants came to the U. S. A. Most of them came for a better life but many of them ended up in poverty.

The first gangs were formed among poor adolescents who grouped together for the sake of socialisation and protection. They were of the same race or the same ethnic background. The first known gang specialized in crimes was called “The Five Points”. It consisted of Irish immigrants and was established in New York City. They dressed in a specific way and used monikers or nicknames. Another early gang were the “Forty Thieves”. Their gang leader was Edward Coleman and they formed in 1826. New York City’s early gangs had an easy time of it because of the government corruption.

They plundered stores and private homes without being charged by the police”. (http://www. acs-onweb. de/hd/content/pres_c2_facts_about_gangs/History-Dateien/History. htm) Gang Activities Generally, gangs in the United States are involved in the following activities: • Graffiti • Fighting • Robbery • Weapon offenses • Vandalism • Drugs Trafficking • Auto theft The primary purpose behind all these illegitimate activities is to gain some monetary benefit – it can be for themselves or for an individual who has paid them to do these illegal activities for him/her.

No Way Out In Gangs “Gang members also claim to enjoy the respect or fear others exhibit around them. Then they say, the money begins flowing, and with that comes all of the things associated with material wealth that is usually beyond the reach of these adolescents without the criminal activity of being involved in a gang”. (http://www. gangwar. com/dynamics. htm) All these things inspire a young kid a lot. But once the kid enters into a gang, there is no way out.

There is also a fear that always moves around a gang member that if he/she suspected as another gang’s member then it would be very dangerous for him – this thing also motivates gang members to stick with the gang. Sometimes a gang member also told that their parents or loved ones will be killed if he/she tries to get out from the gang. Gang wars Gangs’ members are usually identified by the following traits: • Body language • Tattoos • Styles of talking • Dressing • Hand signs A couple of reasons of the gang wars are fighting over girls and violation of territory borders.

These wars have become worst thing since the gang members have got access to firearms – it was first started in the 1970s. Gangs also have hierarchies. They sent minors to commit crimes as if they are arrested, they will receive lighter sentences. Today, the number of gangs has been increased phenomenally. Now territories are just a corner/block. These gangs collaborate with each other to accomplish their anti-social activities. Normally, the leader of the gang is the person who orders for activities and the prime reaper of the fruits of these illegal acts.

Our government is trying hard to deal with these illegal activities of the gangs. They have developed a local intelligence system, but like every thing, the system can be enhanced. Gangs Structure It is important to know that every gang has its own particular hierarchy and chain of command, but generally, they follow the following structure: Leader: A gang leader is usually the oldest member of the gang who possesses the extensive criminal history. He normally directs and instructs other members and also performs duties of recruitment.

Hard-core members: They are always ready to commit any type of crime and posses with criminal background. They are the one who sets the example for younger gang members. Fringe and/or marginal members: They are usually new comers or potential members. They work on temporary basis or are involved in small crimes and do not have big criminal backgrounds. Since the gangs are originated, they are playing major role in the disruption of our society. They have been breaking the laws from the last couple of centuries.

There are no major differences between at the time whey they started and today. Their core features, such as they rob, they plunder, killing people, harass people and drugs dealing are the same. The difference has come only in using the tactics – their weapons usage, their way of dealing and harassment, they are much more organized and influential now, their network is now much more bigger and stronger and similarly the number of gangs and their members are significantly and increased and still increasing with a noticeable rate.

United States of America’s Police department and other intelligence network are much more aware of their ways of dealing/behavior and they have already taken quite prudent steps to eliminate or stop increasing this dangerous grouping from our society.

People are now also aware of the gangs and their activities. They are well informed and cooperative as compare to the past, but they need to be more cooperative and aware of so that we will be able to eliminate this “Cancer” from our society.

Works Cited

History http://www. htm Retrieved December 11, 2006 Not Available http://www. ci. madison. wi. us/POLICE/gangfaqs. html Retrieved December 11, 2006 Gangs OR Us – Robert Walker – Gang identification expert http://www. gangsorus. com/law. html Retrieved December 11, 2006 Street Gang Dynamics http://www. gangwar. com/dynamics. htm Retrieved December 11, 2006 The gangs behind bars – prison gangs Insight on the News – Find Articles http://www. findarticles. com/p/articles/mi_m1571/is_n36_v14/ai_21161641 Retrieved December 11, 2006