Sociological Reasons behind Gang Violence in South Central Los Angeles

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Over the past 60 years there has been a recent phenomenon in the development and rise of gangs and gang violence. This is exceptionally apparent in South Central Los Angeles where the Bloods and the Crips have taken control of the social structure and created a new type of counter culture. Poverty in this area is an enormous problem caused by a shear lack of jobs; but just because there is a lack of jobs doesn’t mean that there will be a lack of bills to pay, so sometimes selling drugs in order to keep a roof over your head seems like the most logical option. Crime often times flourishes in these regions because the inconvenient truth is; crime pays. Senator Tom Hayden stated “It’s been defined as a crime problem and a gang problem but …show more content…
The roughnecks follow a self-fulfilling prophecy of becoming bad because they see no other options available once society already labeled them as troublemakers, and they form a reference group to help perpetuate that image. This is the same for the people living in South Central Los Angeles; the police view them as deviants and treat them as if they were. Chambliss discusses a saint, Jerry who ended up not graduating high school and began to hang out with the roughnecks. “At the end of his second senior year, when he did graduate from high school…Jerry was unemployed and had been living on unemployment for almost a year” (Chambliss 1973). This is very similar to the way members of the South Central Society are treated, they are never given a chance to get a job and are stuck into the ascribed position that they were born into, they are forced to make money by committing illegal acts because to them those are the only people hiring. Society had swept the entirety of the South Central LA community under the rug; they were ignored, stepped on, and in complete darkness. Poverty ran rampant in these parts and jobs were nearly impossible to come by, the biggest employment opportunity in these ghettos was the

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