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Skinhead Violence

Oct 08, 1999 727 Words
Skinhead Violence

When you here the term Skinhead you probably think about young rebels wearing big black boots and Nazi symbols. These happen to be a few trademarks but across the world "Skinhead" refers to a diverse cult of young people. The origin of this cult goes back to the 60's in England, where menacing-looking, shaven-headed and tattooed youths in combat boots began to be seen in the streets. This cult has matured into a large collection of smaller gangs across 33 countries. The ages of members range from 13 to 25 in which half the members are hard-core activists and the rest supporters. This cult is tied into political and other violent and nonviolent groups, suck as the White Aryan Resistance, KKK, populist Party, British National Party, and several others. They get support from so called punks and football (soccer) hooligans known as "hools" to create riots and violence. From the creation of this cult until today it has supported violence, starting with beatings with boots and small weapons, evolving today into a terrorist like cult armed with deadly military weapons.

Just like gangs in the U.S. skinheads also fight among each other. These fights are actually where most deaths by skinheads occur. And just like gangs skinheads have several different beliefs and methods of expression. These types of skinheads range from racist and violent to groups which are political but against racism and violence. The members come from a diverse range of lifestyles among broken homes, poor families, and alienated youngsters. They like the brotherhood of the gangs which they are missing from home. Being a skinhead is not a hobby for the weekends but a lifestyle which ids full of violence and hatred, wreaking havoc on their towns to express their beliefs. The Oklahoma City bombing brought home to American people that no country is immune from terrorism. Although thought to be tied into larger extremist groups, the actual bombing was the work of only a few people. Although they are not responsible for this bombing, the neo-nazi skinheads impose these type threats to their community. Nowhere do the neo-nazi skinheads by themselves constitute a mass-movement. The danger posed by these young racist thugs lies in their taste for violence. Skinheads across the globe have committed numerous murders, firebombing and other crimes of violence against innocent victims whom they deemed to be of the wrong race, religion, nationality, or sexual preference. Their goal whether in Los Angeles or Berlin is a racially pure society like that of the Third Reich.

Contrary to their claim to represent the working class youth, skinheads come from widely varying economic backgrounds. Their roots often lie in domestic instability; a high portion of skinheads come from broken homes, or single parent families. Their gangs often serve as surrogate families for their members. Often youngsters join these groups because it is a place where they can be in an environment which supports their views and beliefs. Skinheads frequently live in communal homes and apartments. Those who live with their families often do so under tense conditions. In February of this year two brothers were accused of killing their mother, father, and younger brother. After the murders they fled to Michigan where they stayed with other skinheads. When captured they had nazi symbols and slogans tattooed all over their bodies. This illustrates the domestic discord which can arise from a family trying to turn their sons away from their hateful way of life.

The nazi ideology and violent behavior of skinheads has caused fear and anguish in every community they have infested. There are ways to counter these gangs before or after they have infested a community. Germany along with other countries have found that if immediate action is not taken against these small groups then the effect is a dangerous escalation off skinhead gangs and violence. They found the best way to counter was through tough-minded law enforcement . The U.S. and other countries have made the decision to form a task force which had succeeded in convicting numerous skinheads. This type of tough law enforcement has also resulted in a decline of skinhead violence. The bottom line is that where ever skinheads operate, their desire for hate and violence makes them a devious and dangerous force in the community.

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