Negative Effects in Joining a Gang and Their Mind Mentality
Parents want the best for their children. They try their best to keep them happy. However they tend to lose their children to the streets and the gangs. Why adolescences join these gangs should not be the question. There are many reasons why they join. Some reasons could be the absence of a parent, whether it is the mother or father. Lack of discipline or their parent’s could be a drug abuser. What motivates an adolescence to desire and acquire gang membership, is the key question. Counselors, jail officers, or a gang task team who have work with these youths on the field, and have gained their trust have heard the answer to this question. Kenneth Thompson a former blood gang member said that “Teenagers these days join gangs or make a team, for the purpose of safety, friendship, status, recognition, curiosity, excitement, money, out of a sense of tradition due to generational commitment (a family member was once a gang banger), peer pressure and drug abuse.” We also went on to say that “Back in his time, that it was different, we didn’t go just picking on people. If you mess with one of our members, than we’re coming for you.”
Therefore, belonging to a gang gives them a sense of power and control over a specific geographic area, a certain group of people and even their own lives. Feeling wanted and loved, or even giving and receiving love are essential expressions for a gang member, as well as for everyone in society. Gang members consider each member in their gang as their extended family. Being part of any gang, gives that youth member a sense of belonging, feeling of pride and honor. They feel they are accounted for and that they are contributing to something bigger than themselves. Belonging in a gang, you receive guidance, shelter and money. The gang becomes the member’s sole source of survival, a surrogate or replacement family that provides positive reinforcement, direction, focus and a sense of purpose, which develops into a strong sense of blind commitment and loyalty. In addition for the sense of security and love, this new found family expects their members to accept all their philosophies and follow rules and willingly participate in violent actions and crimes for the survival of the gang.
Types of Gang Members
Furthermore a gang member does not have to commit a drive-by shooting or some other crime, in order to be considered a gang member. There are different types of gang members. You have the hardcore members, these are the original gangsters (OGs), the leaders or “shot callers” who are down for the gang and will do whatever it takes to defend it. Kenneth Thompson said that “He is an OG, and instead of him handling a situation that he will get one of his members, who need status to handle it for him.” They are the most violent, because all they have to do...