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How to protect your home, family and Community from Norteno and sureno gangs
Terry B. Davis
Protecting your family and Community from gangs.
In order to protect your family, property, and your community from gang influences, you need to learn about them. Majority of gang's were formed inside of prison, mainly for protection from other gangs. Gangs operate fairly similarly, with slight variations. They all claim a sign, a color, have rules and regulations, similar to a constitution, that their members must follow. They all have a structure, some extremely rigid, and some very lax-ed. They have ranks, and a member promotes himself with-in a gang by carrying out acts that either enhance the reputation of the gang or that brings in money.
Gang members are individuals that have been formally brought into a gang by initially, hanging out with them, parting and assisting other gang members by giving them money, assisting them with communications to other gang members, and assisting them in committing crimes. The formality of being brought into the gang or jumped in can be a beating, some will be punched, and kicked by other gang members for a prescribed amount of time. Other's will have to commit a crime to enhance the gang reputation, shooting at the gangs enemies. Some may have to befriend an individual that, is considered in the enemies camp, lure him to a location and then gang members beat him severely. Once brought in, the new member is Schooled. He's taught the gangs constitution, in the case of the Nuestra Familia taught the 14 bonds and commits it to memory. His education continues and includes criminal activities, thefts, burglaries, drugs and drug sells, the use and procurement of firearms of any kind. He will begin getting tattoos with symbols relevant to his gang. Just prior to and during this period of time, parents will begin seeing the changes. Wearing gangster style clothing, using gang slang, drawings and letters that glamorize the gang life style,and gangster rap music. Parents will notice him acting like a tuff guy, use of alcohol and marijuana, and his emergence of anger and his attempts to intimidate the parents. He'll have a lot of new friends that dress in the gang style, and he may appear as if he had been in fights.He will have cell phones, jewelry and other new items that he can't explain or account for. Teachers should also start to notice some of these changes, he no longer associates with the same kids he did before, he develops a negative attitude toward authority, and may begin drawing gang signs and symbols on books note books, and crossing out letters that represent a rival gang. As parents, we are tempted to excuse these actions, as being a teenager. We always see as, that five year old asleep on the couch, fell asleep in the car on the way home from grandma's house.
As he progresses he will start staying out later and later, maybe not coming home at all. School grades and attendance have dropped and he may be getting arrested for minor crimes or violations. He'll begin talking about how the cops are out to get him because of his race or because of the friends he hangs out with and that they didn't do anything. Parents and teachers don't understand him and they are trying to make him subservient to an oppressor.
Parents are ringing their hands, either don't know what to do or pretend it isn't happening. Teachers have wrote him off and he is invisible to them. At last, he is caught committing a serious crime, after anywhere from one to ten or twenty crimes he has committed, he'll receive a commitment to a State Prison. He has finally been promoted to big time gangster status, or so he thinks. While going to trial and being held in the County Jail, his prison schooling begins. He will be approached and asked what gang he represents. He will be required to submit his references, in writing. It will include his, name, birth-date, home address, nick name, Booking number, crime committed, and the names of three gang members that will vouch for him.He will be informed that at 6:00 am he gets out of bed, cleans his cell and waits for breakfast. After breakfast he will study for several hours, learning how to micro write, the ability to write seven lines, in a 1/4"; space. He'll be taught the gangs history, who their enemies and friends are in the prison system. He'll be given the House Rules, rules that the jail is ran by, according to the gangs. Anytime he or anyone leaves the cell block he will submit a note giving the date, time and identifiers of the person leaving. Where they went, who left with them and the time they returned. He'll learn the machine , a prison work-out that all members will do together in unison. He'll be taught that safety and security of the gang comes first, and as a good soldier for the cause he must be ready at all times to attack any enemies if the situation should present itself. He'll learn how to make, hide and pass notes, as well as make weapons from any material that are available, paper, stretch wrap, nails, pens, bed springs, metal from the bunks, doors, or light fixtures. These checks and educational duties continue until released from prison, and back to the streets. Prior to being released he will submit a note to his superior telling them where he will parole to, and that he will either be inactive or active while he is on parole. Inactive means he will not be out committing crimes, but that he will assist the gang with money, communications and anything else that is low keyed. Active means that he will continue his gang activities immediately upon being released. Upon release he will immediately report to his superior on the street and receive instructions. On the street, active members are expected to give money to the gang and he will either act alone, selling drugs, stealing, committing burglaries, or forming his own team. His team will be from several to 25 kids or want-to-be gang members or just drug users. He will direct them and collect money from their activities, keep a percentage, then forward the remainder to his superior. The more money he makes, the higher he is thought of. Gang members carve out their niche in the gang. They will fall into two groups, money makers or enforcers. Money makers, either make and or distribute drugs, specialize in property crimes, car thefts, burglaries, retail thefts, ID thefts, robberies or any-other crime you can think of. While the enforcers, are used to collect drug or any other kind of debt that needs to be collected, and will go after specific targets that the gang wants killed or beaten. If the gang member becomes very good at these activities he will move up in the gang structure. Once a gang member begins moving up he learns the true nature of the gang and understands, it's all about money and power. It's nearly impossible for him to drop out, if he tries, he will be targeted or green lighted. That is, an order to kill or beat him severely, but in this case it would more than likely be a kill order.
Once a child goes to prison it is very, very difficult to get them away from a gang. He'll have to move from the area and more than likely out of the state. Change his appearance, dress and the way he carries himself.He can never associate with any criminal element or he will eventually be identified.
Confronting gang violence is difficult, but it is commonly agreed, it must be attacked on three fronts. Law Enforcement is one front and consists of aggressive enforcement of laws, and collection of information on gangs make up, members, sources of income, and operational methods. The second is teaching parents and teachers how to recognize an at risk youth for gang association/membership, and thirdly the Community as a whole.
Teachers, parents and students need to learn about gangs when the child is in grade school. If kids can be taught the true story of gangs, the earlier the better. Then parents have to begin being parents to their children. Teach them right from wrong, show them love and affection and the true meaning of family, spend time with your kids, have fun with them be a part of their lives. That doesn't mean your their friend, you are the parent, set boundaries and follow it up with love and understanding.
The Community needs to recognize gang activity on their street. Clean up gang drawings as soon as possible, keep the area neat and clean. Get good physical descriptions of gang members or suspected gang members you see on your street. Write down car makes, models, and licenses numbers vehicles associated with gang members. Call the police give the information to them. Take photo's/videos, turn them over to police. If you're afraid of the police don't give your name, use a pay phone, use your computer. Learn what gangs are in your area, how they dress, colors, gang signs. Get to know people on your street, talk with them, form a loose knit association with them, to watch each others property and, kids and report gang activity. Do not confront gang members your self, do not run up to them and take their picture, don't let them see you video tape them. Gangs flourish when people are scared to report them and when people ignore them. Gangs do not like to be seen in the light of day but rather operate in the dark of night.
I hope this is understandable, please send me you comments good or bad. If you have any specific questions are comments feel free to contact me, I'll do what I can to answer your question.