.. r them to fight for the causes that they believed in. It was easier to be noticed as an influential group and viewed as a possible threat when a large amount of organized individuals were pulled together to make noise and work towards change. We have drawn a line of demarcation and we will no longer tolerate fascism, aggression, brutality, and murder of any kind (Newton 21). The Black Panther Party in pursuing their goals also chose to be a Marxist-Leninist party; they chose to use both theory and practice (Meier 37).
This approach had not yet been pirsued within the Civil Rights struggle and succeeded in gaining attention. The Blacks worked towards what were considered real goals: survival, liberation and freedom (Newton 189), rather then the often times unrealistic goals set forth by some other Civil Rights movements. The concepts that the Black Panther Party worked with were seen as threatening, but at the same time inspiring. After all, how could success not be reached when a race came together to fight against those who ridicule them and treat them unfairly. The efforts were many and they tried to work closely with the powers that could make the desired changes. Unfortunately not everything could be changed with the officials who sat in the higher levels of say. Furthermore, the environment that Black citizens were living in contained just too many economically and sociologically disadvantaged Blacks.
A lot of these people failed to allow a grander and more permanent change within the ghettos that they called their homes. Today Blacks are often stereotyped as being useless trouble causing, gang affiliated nobodies. In some areas of the country the previous statement can be considered true. In many of the larger cities, such as Los Angeles, there are many gangs along with and problems associated with the majority of blacks and other minorities living in certain areas. Although these large cities are considered diverse, they are more correctly a haven and a melting pot for those people who have been permanently glued to the ghetto lifestyle.
These neighborhoods are constantly being criticized and looked down upon. The individuals residing in these ghettos are stereotyped as hoodlums who will get nowhere. The faces that live within these ghettos and those that are part of the gangs of today can serve to explain why these stereotypes are so often true. Many of the people living in the big cities have no other place than the streets to turn to. In the streets they find other kids, much like themselves, who have formed a gang in order to survive.
Within the gang all the members work together to take care of one another. In this ghetto city lifestyle support, even if it is in the form of a gang, is very important. Many city officials, however, are frightened by the figured that are related to the gangs. New policies are being discussed to determine what characteristics can be associated with possible gang members, in order to catch them. All this is done in an effort to reduce the amount of gang members wandering on the streets. In an extreme tactic it was suggested to close off entire neighborhoods to Black youths who have done nothing more than dress in blue or black clothing or associate with others who do so; they would authorize criminal penalties for ordinary, non-disruptive acts of walking or driving through a residential neighborhood with a relative or a friend (Shoop, Gang Warfare 12).
Although most of the law officials in the San Jose area, where this proposal was first suggested are in agreement with this type of strategy, many activist groups are saying that this type of enforcement will cause fairly large restrictions on freedom (Shoop, Gang Warfare 13). It is not enough to have the law officials continuously trying to arrest and threaten a group of unguided kids, whose numbers are continuously growing due to the lack of community involvement and support. If the government wants to see change it must work with the cities to turn things around, starting at the bottom, or rather the beginning of the problem. I dont know how much can be done to move these minority groups away from the ghettos, but perhaps with some help something can be done to right the wrong that began over a hundred years ago (Shoop, Image of Fear 12). In similar case law enforcement agencies also developed profiles for youth that may be associated with gangs.
Despite all the negative reactions to this idea, the law enforcement believes that it is a logical, efficient way to identify and mother dangerous youths (Shoop, Image of fear 12). Civil rights advocates who are against this proposal believe that the police will be finding and arresting more youth due to the fact that they fit their profile rather then whether or not they really do associate with a gang. It is believed that the profiles that these teens share are similar regardless of whether or not they are involved with a gang. Already teens have been thrown out of shopping malls, ejected from amusement parks, and stopped and searched by police, who may later enter their names and photos into the computer databases (Shoop, Image of fear 14). In my opinion this is definitely a violation of certain civil rights.
Police are taking action before they have proper cause to do so. Although I do agree that much of the gang activity is becoming quite out of control, I feel that it is necessary to have a crime committed before going ahead and labeling these teens as gangsters just based on their appearances. It may appear to be easy for an outsider to suggest that these people should simply find their way out of these hopeless neighborhoods and cities and start new lives. Once again, as it was already proven in the past, this is not as easy as it may seem. The lives that these people are living are not ones that they were forced to accept and live with.
Although the initial gangs were created as a type of defense, the gangs eventually escalated towards taking action on hate and tension that they have towards other rival gangs, even against gangs whose races are both primarily the same. The issue of civil rights and equality, which were the major factors, involved with the gangs of the sixties, evolved into the often materialistic issues that todays gangs fight and kill for. Territory and mere hate are the principal factors that are involved in the tensions between gangs today. Even if we were to understand the cause of what created these gangs, we are not guaranteed that we could find a solution to put an end to that sub-culture. There are no signs that the end of gang violence will be reached anytime soon.
It is important to see that because the discriminations Black people had to deal with in the early part of the 20th century had a very significant effect on the lives of the future generations. Forced to live in designated neighborhoods, Blacks were never able to break the cycle of poverty that they lived in and continued to raise families in the same type of environment. Although gangs are a big issue in the ghetto type cities, it is important to understand and to realize that gangs were not placed there because a group of rebellious juvenile delinquents wanted to cause problems. They were eventually created because of the prejudice that another group felt towards their race and community. Bibliography Works Cited Books Abrams, Charles. Race Bias in Housing.
Ann Arbor: University Microfilms, Inc., 1964. Meier, August; Rudwick, Elliot. Black Protest in the Sixties.Chicago:The New York Times Company, 1970. Newton, Huey P. To Die For the People.
New York: Random House, 1972. Rudwick, Elliot; John H. Bracey, Jr and August Meier, eds. The Rise of the Ghetto. Belmont: Wadsworth Publishing Company Inc., 1971. Journals Shoop, J.G.
Gang warfare: legal battle pits personal liberty against public safety. Trial. V34, n3 (1998):12-16. Shoop, J.G. Image of fear: minority teens allege bias in gang profiling.
Trial. V30, n10 (1994): 12-15. American History.