Hate Groups

Essay by EssaySwap ContributorCollege, Undergraduate February 2008

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According to William Finnegan, author of Cold New World, there are a couple of good reasons that teenagers in the Antelope Valley area become members of white supremacist groups. Many of them are obvious just in reading the book. Peer pressure is the biggest reason given for the youth to join these groups. This means that since their friends are in the group, they should be in it. Another reason is to be protected. Both the Sharps and the NLR's protect themselves and each other. They 'watch each other's backs.' And if you're not in one of these groups, you're bound to get hurt, or looked bad upon. You're reputation might be at stake, so the natural thing to do would be to become part of the in group. No one wants to be an outsider..or part of the out group, so they become affiliated with the in crowd.

Then they feel a sense of belonging and security. It all comes down to peer pressure and being regarded as one of us. Another reason that comes to mind is using the group in general as a scapegoat. A person builds so much frustration and anger at something, and instead of going to the gym to vent their anger, they join a gang and let the idea of prejudice guide their anger to let out their emotions.

Sonoma County does not have the extent of gangs that Antelope Valley has, thankfully. But if we did. I'm sure that the same type of social interactions, economic conditions, and family actions would be about the same for both areas. The poverty line plays a major role in the economic situation that an area has, and if the poverty line is high, that is , if we have a large population of homeless...