Teens in gangs Essay



Gangs are groups of young people who form a group that operates together. A gang may have young adults and teens that range from 13 to 25 years. It is estimated that more than 7% of the youths are gang members. They are from different ethnic groups, different age and have different intensions. Some other gangs have members from one ethnic community.

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Gangs are believed to perform crimes and it’s believed that about 20% of all teens know someone who was killed or was injured by a gang. In most of the cities and major towns, most of the youths that were killed by gun are mostly gung members. They care problems to all places ranging from large cities to small rural towns and thus are regarded as a major problem to every one in the country.

Gangs usually have territory, they claim a particular area of a town where they plan and organize their activities. They are known by nick names, and they are organized by leaders and followers. They protect their territory from other gangs as they spend most of their time fighting with their rivals.

Thesis statement

In the world, there is a new found tread that’s immerging that of gang movements. These gangs are normally formed by teenagers with a leader and strict rules of operation. There normally involved with violent activities such as muggings, murder as well as drug businesses. It from this fact this paper seeks to highlight the motivating factors of joining the gangs, their operations and suggests possible means and ways of arresting the situation before it runs out of hands.



Gangs are groups of young people who form a group that operates together. A gang may have young adults and teens that range from 13 to 25 years.


These are people between the ages of 12 and 19 years.


These are illegal activities that are against the law and harm the people and society at large.


In all corners of the world, there exist a real gang or there existed and the history roles on through a certain period. It provides the information about the happenings and the achievements that were made through the period of the existence of the gang.

Gangs are among the most dangerous groups that surround the community, the sons and daughters are absorbed in the group that again turns to terrorize the community. Most of these groups are formed with a clear view of assisting the community and as youth welfare organizations that goes on developing in to another deadly group.

With various researches having been conducted, it is clear that even the deadly terror groups are absorbing teen in order to enable them penetrate in all areas and carry out their investigation effectively without suspicion. Gangs are part of the community for it would be hard for a parent to know his/her child has joined the group. Most of the gang groups have oaths that is taken by the members and that guarantees secrecy in the group.

Having witnessed what gangs are doing to those who disobey their rules, most people are submissive and none is willing to talk about the group to evade consequences. Many people have lost their lives in the hands of gangs, others have lost their properties and others have suffered in other ways like beatings and rape.


The research is intended:

To compare between the invasion of gangs in big cities and small towns

To analyze the possible causes for the youth to join the group

To analyze the benefits the teens get once they join the gang

To analyze the consequences one face after defecting from the gung.

To analyze on how the gangs operate

To analyze the activities of the gang and how to distinguish them


The groups of teens and young adults who come together and form a group that tend to spent time together is what is referred to as a gang. They come together to plan and investigate on how they are going to carry out their activities together are mostly crimes and violence. They are known by their nick names which makes it harder to distinguish a particular person. They have their leaders and followers, each gang or group has to claim a certain area as their territory. Gang spends most of its time fighting for the territory with other rival gangs as they play hide and seek with the authority. (Brian,1968)

Gang also has a coded language or phrases that cannot be understood by a person who is not a member. These special phrases and signs help the gangs to know the members of a particular gang. When greeting each other, they may demonstrate a sign or hold or shake the other person in a certain way that will enable them identify their members.

Whenever one fails to give a proper identification sign may lead to thorough beating or more severe consequences. (Huff, ed.2002)

As gangs are outlawed groups, they are not subjected to any donations from the government or any other legal sources. In order for the group to sustain its needs and the needs for its members, it has to look for a way to generate some funds.

Gangs make their money through involvement of carrying out illegal activities. The most common way is dealing with illegal drags and forcing people to pay tax to them in the name of protection fee. They are also prone to robbing people on their way and breaking in to other peoples businesses and homes. (Klein, 1995)

Another way these groups get their money is through the sales of illegal weapons. Most of the illegal weapons that are found in cities and other areas are mostly traded by the gangs. These weapons are used to commit crimes are murder as well as fighting police forces.

It’s quit hard to distinguish the backgrounds of the gang member. Members come from all types of backgrounds but with different reasons. Each and every member has a unique reason for joining for they would even fear to disclose their reasons in fear of death.

Some of the members joined the groups unwillingly; they were threatened, hurt or beaten up before they joined. This leaves a teen with no choice but to obey the rules and save the life. Others may have joined because they had no secure family. As most families are breaking for different reasons, teens are left between the two warring parties, they may not have alternative but to look for family security which might end them in the gang.

Rejection may be another reason to join the gang. If a teen feels that has no value in the family, she/he may find a way of getting accepted. In the process of looking for acceptance, he may fall in the traps of gangs.

Peer influence is another issue that has contributed to the teens joining the gung. The already gang member teens will try and attract his/her friends to join the group. Though is not much common, it has played a role on the issue. (Miller, ed.2001)

Some other teens may feel bored and may be willing to have people around them. This would lead a teen to join the group. This has cheated many teens for they think that they would be comfortable with the gang and would benefit from them as they would get expensive ornaments and clothes just to find that they have nothing to offer.

In this process, the gang takes advantage of these issues and promises teens that they would adhere to their needs just to find that they were false promises.

Gangs mostly dress differently from other members of the community. Different gang groups may have different signs or labels to distinguish them from other gang members. A certain gang may put on T-shirts form one club that they resemble in color and bandanas. By doing so, each member can be able to know their group mates and distinguish from other gangs.

It is apparent that most teens are getting involved in gangs. This is as a result of parents; most parents are not interested to know what problems their children are facing.  Most of the teens that join the gangs are as a result of lacking someone they can share their problems with.

Parents have failed their duties to help their children learn and understand what dangers they might be exposed to when they join gang. Parents should be in front line in guiding their children with whatever support they may want from them.

Parents should also be ware of those who are in friendship with his/her son or daughter. If the teen is not guided in choosing a friend, he may end up having a friend who might be a gang member.

Parents may notice that their children have joined the gang by the discovery of different behaviors. Whenever a teen joins the gang, most of that alter their former behaviors and they start conducting in a different manner.

Teen may reduce the time and talk he used to spend with family members. This might be one of the reasons the teen has done so. He may also change drastically and stop adhering to parents’ rules. The teen may change and start responding to the parent whenever told something. This may also be extended to other members of the family and to the community. The teen may loose interest in nearly everything, he may compensate for the time he was spending with friend to stay alone. The parents should also be aware to notice a change in living styles of teens when they join the gang groups, they may get obsessed with gangster movies and thus they may try to imitate the acts. The parents can also keep an eye on their teens to know whom they are associating with as friends. Normally, teens who have joined gangs make adorable friends with this gang and if the parent notices that the teen is always in the company of suspected members of the gang, then that can be used as a factor to know he has joined it. In addition, gangs are always associated with evil activities like murder and thuggerly making them rub shoulders in the wrong way with authorities like the police and administrators. If a teen is always in the wrong side of the law, the parent should note that and make a probability that he/she is a member of a certain gang. (Spergel,1995)


Its evident that in the current world there are new treads immerging bin the gang movements. Several gangs have been formed and mainly drawing their membership from the youth especially so from the teens age. Some involve themselves in criminal activities which are danger to the society like murders, drugs business as well as sex slavery. Some gangs have been known to forcefully recruit members and those who forfeit this recruitment are even murdered. The formation of a gang can be attributed to several factors. There are those that are formed fight for their rights that they so claims are infringed. This may include the right to own property or because of unequal distribution of resources. Some are formed to facilitate their illegal businesses such as drug peddling, sex slavery or extortions. These gangs extort money from members of the society in the name of protection fees, or operation fees. To further aggravate the matter, politicians normally hire the services of theses gangs in their quest to advance their political ambitions. They are used to harass the opponent and scare away supporters of the other opponents.

However time has come for the society to deal with this problem of gangs. The society can employ several methods to alleviate this problem. It’s the duty of the authorities to identify the root courses of this gangs and address them, for example if its an equal distribution of resources, fairness should be observed, further they can dialogue with members of this gang with an aim of airing their grievances and suggesting possible solutions.

Incentives such as money or amnesty can be offered to the members who are willing to leave these gangster movements. Their security should be adequately observed. After leaving alternatives should be provided like jobs, businesses or education. Counseling and education should be accorded to all the teens on dangers associated with joining these gangs and their implications.

The last resort however should be the application of the full force of the law to arrest the situation. The police can be used to break these gangs by arresting the members and arraigning them in the corridors of justice.


Brian, C.1968, The pump house gang, and the electrical kool-aid acid test, journal, vol.4, p.1

Huff, C., ed.2002, Gangs in America, 3rd edition. Newbury Park, CA: SAGE Publications.

Klein, W. 1995,The American Street Gang. New York: Oxford University Press.

Miller, J, ed.2001, The Modern Gang Reader, 2nd edition. Los Angeles: Roxbury Press.

Spergel, I. 1995, The Youth Gang Problem: A Community Approach. New York: Oxford University Press.