Why Teens Join Gangs

May 1, 2012
By Anonymous

Many people wonder why teens would think of joining a gang. There are many different of teens who join and they join for many different reasons; some of them include wanting power or having status, looking for friendship or a family, peer pressure and wanting money and other materialistic items.

Some teenagers join gangs because of family involvement. In many situations family members already in gangs often recruit other family members. If a teenagers family is not in a gang and they still join they might be seeking a family. Young teens who grow up without family support would see the gang more like their second family because of all the support and attention they are receiving that they never had before. Some even get involved with gangs because they are not getting any attention from parents. Joining a gang provides negative attention; even though it is the wrong kind of attention, the teens still see it as attention and to some teens any kind of attention is better than none.

Teenagers would also join for respect. If a kid has low self-esteem and don’t feel good about themselves, they are more vulnerable to joining a gang. They tend to seek out ways in order to feel accepted. If safer options are not available, they would turn to gangs for their support. If teens have low self-esteem more than likely they don’t have an identity for themselves and they won’t be respected. Youths desperately search for a place to belong and gangs accept youths who don’t feel loved or accepted by parents, adults and other children.

Teenagers also love the gang life because they feel rich at a young age. Many think they are going to become gang famous. Lots of youths join gangs to make fast money. Young people who are not financially stable yet because of reasons such as struggling to find a job or trying to help their parents would consider getting into a gang because it is fast and easy money that can help support themselves and their family. Financially disadvantaged young people would also rather look for a fast way to earn money. In the gang life they can participate in things like one drug deal and make enough money to get materialistic items such as clothes and sneakers than actually having a real job that would take a full months earnings. The appeal of obtaining money fast can be overwhelming for children and gangs are involved in drugs and other criminal activities that give children opportunities to get money quickly.

Teens would also want to join because of the excitement and the way television shows and movies portray it. They make it seem like gangs are fun and they provide activities and a social life. Even if teens don’t watch the television shows and movies they still might think the lifestyle is fun. The reason they may think this is because they may get so caught up with the money and new friends that they don’t realize that what they are doing is illegal. They might join because they don’t really have the actual facts of what goes on in a gang. Many young people don’t know what gangs are really about and they have a misguided sense about it. They might think they can join the gang for fun and get out whenever they please. They also might believe that joining a gang will not involve them in violence and criminal activities. Gang activities appear exciting to children, especially teens. They like to take risks and gangs provide many opportunities to take risks and find excitement. Youths would think it’s fun because they enjoy living on the edge and participating in reckless activities. But often what at first appears to be fun has serious consequences.

Young people join gangs for the feeling of having power and being powerful. Even though in actuality, those having power is false. They would feel like they have power for many different reasons. One reason is that they think they would appear very intimidating to some people, such as bullies or other children they don’t get along with or have had problems with them in the past. In their minds, if they join the gang they would appear tough and more acceptable to scare bullies away. Teens would lastly feel like they have power because gangs provide a false sense of protection from the law. The gangs make them feel like they will always be protected no matter what from everyone.

There are a variety of personal reasons for young people joining gangs. These reasons include the excitement of gang activity, the need to belong, peer pressure, attention, financial benefit, family tradition and a lack of realization of the hazards involved.

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This article has 1 comment.

CheesyPuff said...
on Oct. 24 2013 at 8:32 am
Very well thought out argument, but just to let you guys know , I AM GAY

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