Chicano Gangs

Topics: Gang, Gang signal, Los Angeles Pages: 9 (3986 words) Published: April 26, 2010
Chicano Gangs
What is a gang? The California Law defines a gang as any organization, association or group of three or more persons, whether formal or informal, which as continuity of purpose, seeks a group identity, and has members who individually or collectively engage in or have engaged in a pattern of criminal activity. Chicano gang involvement begins as early as elementary school. Children just seven and eight years old are being enlisted because of the difference in the punishment for youths in the Criminal Justice System. Why are children being pulled into gangs? There are several reasons, some are to make friends, others want protection and they think that gangs will provide them with a lot of money. Or they come from broken homes and are looking for family security. Regardless the reason, all of those are myths! Gangs only offer false promises. Here are the facts... Joining a gang is entering a zone where beatings and shooting happen non stop. To join a gang boys usually have to fight other gang members , a couple at the same time, which is usually referred to as “rolled in” or “walking the line.” Once a person becomes a member of a gang, only the followers can last. There is a leader of the gang, who all the members fear the most who's rules need to be obeyed at all times. You get promoted in a gang by staying in and committing horrible acts like violence or murder. The day you join, you have to swear a “blood oath'” that you will obey all the rules, and if you don't, the punishment for breaking the oath is death. Being in a gang does not make you money. In fact, gang members don't have much education or any at all, which means they can't get well paying jobs. They often have to rob or steal to get money and that ends them up in prison and if they do get out, employees don't want to hire anyone with a criminal record. It also doesn't make you popular. The only friends you will have are your gang because most kids and teens will think you are too dangerous to hang out with and you will have a lot {text:soft-page-break} of enemies, which include all the members of the rival gangs. 70 percent of teens who were shot last year in Los Angeles were in gangs which concludes that gangs offer no protection. It only increases your chances of injury or death. Gangs always try to get new members. They must expand into larger areas to be known and as gangs expand, they force innocent people to join. They sell drugs, destroy properties, rob local business owners by forcing them to pay money for protection, beat or kill people in their neighborhoods and ruin buildings with graffiti yet they promise that they will take you in and take care of you like a family. Would your family ask you to do any of those things? Gang members are typically male. There are some female members but they play a more submissive role by holding the weapons or money for the gang as well as providing a companion and supplying information. However, within the last fifteen years times have changed with some gangs being strictly female or having female leaders. There are three other types of gangs besides street gangs. Ethnic gangs define themselves by the nationality or race of the other gang members and Turf gangs define themselves by the area's that they control. Prison gangs are another type of gang. When gang members go to prison, they don't necessarily stop their gang membership. Street gangs continue to exist and fight other gangs inside prison walls. But some gangs start inside prisons, and only later do they extend their reach to the outside world. These gangs require members to have been in prison at one time, and are particularly violent and brutal. When people talk about gangs in Southern California now days, they usually talk about young black men. But the the typical gang member is not confined to South-Central Los Angeles. He lives in places like Wilmington, Pomona, Santa Ana, East Los Angeles and Nor walk. He's a Chicano, one...
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