In 1850’s, a gang known as the Dead Rabbits was formed in New York City (Klein 1997). It usually used a symbol of a dead rabbit and had red stripes on the clothing of its members. Both male and female were allowed to join the group. Most members in the gang were from disadvantaged neighbourhoods because of the economic background (Klein 1997). To be a member one had to commit robbery witnessed by one of the members. The Dead Rabbits performed organized crimes and stole from unsuspecting civilians. Prosperous people for hired the gang for protection.
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The Gophers were a New York Gang formed in the early 1900. Various local street gangs came together to form the Gophers gang (Knox 2000). The gang usually stole police uniforms and wore them on the streets. The group consisted of another gang group consisting of female known as the Lady Gophers. They organized fights and stole from civilians. They also performed deadly attacks on other neighbourhoods.
In the late 1950’s, the Almighty Vice Lord Nation, was formed in Chicago (Marcovitz & Dressang 2010). It is estimated that the gang consisted of about 30,000 members. It consisted of mostly African American youths. The gang wore hats, gloves and graffiti symbols. The gang was involved in illegal activities like extortion, theft, battery and assault.
The American Mafia gang was a ruthless group of young gangsters in New York. They were drug peddlers and they killed without fear (Siegel 2005). Most members in this group consisted Italian immigrants and farmers who had flocked America. One had to undergo various initiation rites and rituals to become a member of the mafia gang. The recruits had to prick their fingers and drink blood from them. They also had to swear to stay and follow the rules of the gang for a lifetime.
The gang is strictly against the attack of innocent civilians by members of other criminal gangs. If a gang attacks a neutral person, they take responsibility and avenge on behalf of the innocent person.
The Crips were founded in New York in the 21st Century. They defended the resources they had in their neighborhoods by ensuring that no trespassers were given space to start businesses unless they are members of the group, or they pay the required tax. They sell drugs, hire services, provide security and prostitution services to clients so that they can up their financial status (Weisel, 2002). Most members of the gang were also known to be talented in rap music and broadcasting and they usually competed in the entertainment scenes.
It is very hard to convince the youth to move out of these gangs because of the peer pressure. Quitting these youth groups can be done without dire consequences.
The gangs have had a lot of impact on the society and the neighborhoods where they are formed. Business activities in these areas are minimal for fear of attacks and thus the economic status and development of the areas depreciates as time goes by.
Most members of the gang groups are psychologically demoralized and their self-esteem is very low. This is because these members join the groups when they are kids due to frustrations. Many are from broken families and when they join the gangs, they have no regrets (Covey, 2010). They resolve their conflicts with their enemies by issuing threats. From the initiative, prevention and suppression methods, the target should be based on the teens before they are ready to join these gang groups. Program initiatives and projects should be established in the neighbourhood to ensure that the minds of the adolescents are set and idleness is reduced (Spergel 1993).
Covey. H.C. (2010). Street Gangs Throughout the World. Springfield, IL: Charles C Thomas Publisher
Klein, M.W. (1997). The American Street Gang: Its Nature, Prevalence, and Control. London, UK: Oxford University Press
Knox, G.W. (2000). An introduction to gangs. Chgo: New Chicago School Press
Marcovitz. H. & Dressang. D. (2010). Gangs. Minneapolis, MN : ABDO
Siegel, L.J. (2005) Criminology. New York, NY: Cengage Learning
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Spergel, I.A. (1993). Gang Suppression & Intervention: An Assessment. Darby, PA: DIANE Publishing
Weisel, D.L. (2002). Contemporary Gangs: An Organizational Analysis. Tx: LFB Scholarly Publishing LLC