Gang Violence in KC

I have been writing this post in pieces for quite some time, I could not find the appropriate tone for it because I did not want it to sound like a PSA, or become as sensational as the local news paper. A couple of weeks ago a gang fight broke out at a local arcade, I had not heard about a gang fight since I witnessed many back in high school.

Gangs back in high school were something you just had to get used to. The break down in the family structure, not so much the whole marriage father and mother roles, but the sense of belonging to a family in general, to me is what breeds gangs.

When a teenager feels alone and there is nobody for him to be around, they seek the companionship of a family. You then start learning that that family is to be protected and the enemies became many. While what happened at power play could have been simply some kids that were trouble and had been kicked out of school feeling left out, it could also be something a little more serious.

I don’t think that gangs are going to take over the whole Kansas City area, but when brawls are starting at family places, and malls, girl fights that make it to youtube and could land some teens in life in prison, I get a little worried. I then realized that I have been so disconnected from that world since high school that I have no idea if the gangs around here wear any colors.

Back when I was in high school, your starter jacket identified the people that you associated with. Gold and Black, Blue and Black, Red and Black were all color combination that to me meant something. I had minimal issues with the gangs at school because my best friend was someone that was respected, not because he was a member but because of his size.

I think it is important to learn how to identify gang members, and to promote prevention. I think organizations like Big Brothers Big Sisters make the most difference. Even TKC’s mentality of more Xbox is probably a good one.

I have heard that most real gangs around here do not mess with regular citizens, but the string of young people acting stupid and being so violent is really something that should concern us all. If you have any additional information about this subject, please post it.

11 Responses to Gang Violence in KC

  1. 1. They no longer use “colors” to define members young grasshoppa. Most use tattoos or particular clothing. Although there are still red and blue bandanas…..(can I call you PACMAN?)

    2. The fight at the arcade was an established kc gang (established as in they have a name) vs. high school kids from Hickman Mills. I question the intellgence to have a field trip school sponsored at a friggin Arcade that is usually filled with thugs and thug wannabeez.

    3. Gangs not messing with reg. folk? Wow…what world you living in, son? *see the closure of several malls across the city*

    4. Take the blue pill and call me next week. =D

    5. Prevention starts and ends with basic education in a structured environment. Good luck with the KC school district. Cynical yes.

    on a semi-serious note I’m a HUGE fan of THE SUGAR HILL GANG

  2. Yeah Wookieluv is right. It’s not like older movies where you can tell gang members at a glance.

    And unfortunately gangs (or the white suburbans fear of them) have run the general public out of several public/family venues.

    Of course it doesn’t help that now youth don’t even need an established gang. A lot of the stuff I have seen on the news is just kids getting caught up in a mob mentality. Heck adults can get caught up in an emotionally charged moment but kids are even more susceptible.

  3. *remembers The Outsiders Soc’s vs. Greasers*

    Stay gold Pony Boy….Stay gold………*que Stevie Wonder*

  4. A link to this ridiculous story (thanks to Hit Coffee for the heads-up) seems appropriate.

  5. vis a vis Peter’s link:

    “Are we not men?
    We are DEVO!”

  6. back home in Dominica when I was younger I was in a gang. Twas about music though. heavy metal. no violence. no blood shed. We actually were artists. I don’t know what these gangs want out of life.

  7. That story you linked to says the gang member were celebrating a birthday at the arcade. Maybe its just me, but Im guessing these weren’t hardened criminals. What kind of gang celebrates a birthday, at a chuck e. chesse.

  8. markl. follow the booty.

  9. Gangs indocternate kids, from around 3 years of age. So a birthday party would not be unheard of. I worked the gang unit for the Georgia Depart of Corrections for 4 years, and I can tell you this. The ones running these things are not stupid. They are highly organized, and will follow the money. If you want to get rid of gangs, make education cool again, and easy money a taboo. Get parents, if you can find them, involved and have them take some responsibility for the actions taken by these kids.

    Fortunately, they either outgrow this mentality or they don’t live long enough. Civilians are the cattle for these people. They can be highly sociopathic, and will make a point to make an example of anyone who they percieve not to be scared of them.

    I wish you lucjk in trying to figure this issue out. You hbave some of the basics down, but fast money combined with a low socio-economic status, combined with a lack of infrastructure due to poor education, and no parental involvement are the issues. I see this crap just driving around town. 8-10 year old kids throwing signs and roving in mini-packs. They do mule work or what not for those that are too scared of going back to jail.

    Yah it sucks, but until someone takes these people to task, it will never go away. It is spreading.

  10. I have to agree with wookie.. most of the gangs around here are more covert and underground. It may be little more visible in the inner city but out here in the suburbs its practaly invisible. @_@

  11. Log – I’ve got nothing to offer here but I wanted to thank you for the insight in this post — you’ve really captured what I think a growing fear for a lot of people is — and the rise in violence with a seeming complete disregard for any rules of order amongst teens terrifies me — thanks for highlighting it.

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