Gangs: Bloods vs. Crips

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Criminology 3023
Paper 2
Cari Berlin
3/13/13

1
When it comes to the high crime rate throughout our country we are quick to blame almost everything other than what is actually at fault; but lately the country has been starting to realize what is causing all of the problems and trying to adapt to find ways to fix it. There are many theories for why the crime rate is so high and each of them has many valid points, but the two that seem the most accurate are the Social Disorganization Theory and Cloward and Ohlin’s Differential Opportunity Theory. They both focus on very different angles while still somehow being quite similar in their opinions of the crime rate today. They both believe that the adolescent age group is responsible for the majority of our high crime rate, and I can’t say I disagree. But they are both on different sides of the spectrum on why adolescents are responsible. When explaining lower-class crime and delinquency the two theories focus on two different reasons. The social disorganization theory believes that most of the gangs or delinquent groups all resided in areas that either had persistent poverty and unemployment or high minority residence. Basically this theory didn’t think it was necessary to blame the crime rate on aspects outside of the person’s control, such as ethnicity, culture, or traits they inherited rather than developed on their own. While the differential opportunity theory focused more on gangs and crime rate having more to do with opportunity than anything else. They also believed that a child’s relationship with their elders also had a large impact on how an adolescent felt about crime. This theory believed that the elders of a community could influence you from the beginning and mold your feelings about crime. If you lived in a community with a tight bond between generations it was way more likely for an adolescent to believe they are simply just “following in the footsteps of their family” than...
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