Gangs and our Society
On any given day, you can pick up a newspaper or turn on a television and find something about gang violence. A Los Angeles deaf girl was shot to death while signing to a friend. Police say that she was shot because a gang member thought she was giving gang signs. In Illinois a 20-year-old man was shot while getting his baby daughter out of his car. A teenager was reported by police to have approached the man in his driveway and opened fire. After arresting the suspect, he told police it was part of his initiation to shot someone he did not know. A Washington D.C. family takes a wrong turn into gang territory and is fired upon. A 3-year-old is killed and her 2-year-old brother wounded. Two FBI agents and a police sergeant are murdered inside the Washington, D.C. police headquarters by a gang member.
A Pittsburgh police sergeant walking home with his daughter is killed with his own gun after he stops, and confronts a gang spraying graffiti on a street.
"Gangs today are more numerous and deadly than those romanticized nearly 40 years ago in screen and stage productions of "West Side Story". Trends in gang violence and crime are accelerating faster than ever before. Nationally, combating deadly street gangs has become one of the top priorities of the Federal Bureau of Investigation. No longer only of concern to a large metropolis like Los Angeles, the gang problem now extends to small cities, towns, and suburbs" (Diane McNamara). As gang related crimes increase, officials are trying to find out why people join and remain loyal to gangs. By studying societies influence on humans, there is evidence to blame several forces. These speculations include the forces of peer pressure, broken families, gang loyalty,