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Gangs causing madness

There are 33,000 violent street gangs, motorcycle gangs, and prison gangs with about 1.4 million members that are criminally active in the U.S. alone today. It was proven that 80% of gun related homicides are gang related.
There are 33,000 violent street gangs, motorcycle gangs, and prison gangs with about 1.4 million members that are criminally active in the U.S. alone today. New York City alone has 414 murders a year caused by guns and gang violence. What do you think, does the U.S. have a gun or a gang problem? Photo by Samantha Aversano.

by Jaclyn Thompson, Junior News Editor

Crips. Bloods. Latin Kings. MS-13. Young Guns. Its been questioned whether America has a gang or a gun problem. Gangs are the root of America’s gun problem.

There are 33,000 violent street gangs, motorcycle gangs, and prison gangs with about 1.4 million members that are criminally active in the U.S. alone today. It was proven that 80% of gun related homicides are gang related.

“Its a gang problem, its not the guns its the people with the guns that are the problem,” junior Celeste Trevellini said.

New York City alone has 414 murders a year caused by guns and gang violence. It is the way gangs use guns that is the problem. Teen gangs are the source of 40% of NYC shootings. It was shown on CBS news that crew members look at their gang as more of a family than their actual blood relations.

“ We have a gun problem. To many people have guns in NYC, how are gangs getting them if nobody is selling them? But nowadays they are no real gangs. Back in the day, it was a lot worse, now they’re just killers and wannabes,” Level 3 School Safety Mcallistier said.

Not only is gang violence an issue in New York, but all over America. Gangs are the issue, not people having possession of guns. People licenced with guns, use them for protection. As known, the gun loophole is that most states do not require a background check for firearms purchased at a gun show from private people. Federal law only requires licensed dealers to conduct checks.

“ There is both a gun problem and a gang problem. Some kids are going into gangs to get the support they need that they’re not getting from other places and some people are quick to resort to guns as a solution to problems and try to over exercise their second amendment rights,” geometry teacher Jacqueline West-Johnston said.

Gang membership is quickly growing; the 2011 report indicates a 40% growth in gang membership since the 2009 report. America wouldn’t have such a gun problem if people were responsible and given the proper training in gun handling. Having a gun isn’t the issue, the issue is the way their being used, to harm others.

“I look at my gang more than my friends, I act of them as if they are my blood family. Some of  them mean more to me than my actually blood family,” anonymous gang member.

Both the gangs and the guns are a problem in the United States. If gangs didn’t exist the gun problem wouldn’t be as horrific as it is now. Gangs will resort to violence regardless if armed or unarmed. The younger group of teens who join gangs don’t fully understand what they’re getting themselves into violence wise. These teens join gangs searching for a place that provides support. America has a gang problem, don’t ignore it.

 

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