Essay by Rocco SabitinoCollege, UndergraduateA+, January 1996

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Gangs are a violent reality that people have to deal with in today's cities. What

has made these groups come about? Why do kids feel that being in a gang is both an

acceptable and prestigious way to live? The long range answer to these questions can

only be speculated upon, but in the short term the answers are much easier to find. On

the surface, gangs are a direct result of human beings' personal wants and peer pressure.

To determine how to effectively end gang violence we must find the way that these

morals are given to the individual Unfortunately, these can only be hypothesized.

However, by looking at the way humans are influenced in society, I believe there is good

evidence to point the blame at several institutions. These include the forces of the media,

the government, theater, drugs and our economic system.

On the surface, gangs are caused by peer pressure and greed.

Many teens in

gangs will pressure peers into becoming part of a gang by making it all sound glamorous.

Money is also an crucial factor. A kid (a 6-10 year old, who is not yet a member) is

shown that s/he could make $200 to $400 for small part time gang jobs. Although these

are important factors they are not strong enough to make kids do things that are strongly

against their morals.

One of the ways that kids morals are bent so that gang violence becomes more

acceptable is the influence of television and movies. The average child spends more time

at a TV than she/he spends in a classroom. Since nobody can completely turn off their

minds, kids must be learning something while watching the TV. Very few hours of

television watched by children are educational, so other ideas are...