Masculinity On Black Male 's Gang Members Essay

Masculinity On Black Male 's Gang Members Essay

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The aim of this dissertation was to discover the impact of masculinity on black male’s gang members in the UK and the USA. In general, it was found that youth gangs are not only deeply entrenched in the USA, but it has spread into a global problem and the UK was no exception to this. However, there are significant differences remain in the way gangs are defined in both the UK and the USA, and as a result, there seems to be no fixed definition of the term. In addition, researchers highlight the problems of having varied definitions, claiming that innocent young people tend to labelled as gang members even when they are hanging out with peers on the street as gang members. Furthermore, after researching the variations of definitions provided by researchers, it was found that the UK shared similar gang characteristics to the USA. For example, in both countries, gang members are seen to be predominantly black males from disadvantaged neighbourhoods and often participated in gang-related activities such as drive-by-shootings, territorial based conflicts, possession and use of lethal weapons, distribution of drugs etc. This has led the media in the UK reporting that the gang problem is a black problem. However, they have been criticised by researchers claiming that gangs reflect the ethnic makeup of the local community they belong to (Aldridge et al, 2007; Bullock & Tilley, 2002) and the media are only reporting gang crimes committed in the black community and fail to acknowledge the everyday issues these males face in their communities.
Furthermore, this dissertation aimed to provide explanations for why young males join gangs. It found that although there are several risk factors that motivate young people to join a gang, gaining a s...


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...y, respect or social and cultural capital within the community. Finally, the dissertation looked the benefits and consequences of desistance from gang membership. Becoming a parent was highlighted as a major turning point for most gang members, as this did not only allow them to seek a better future for themselves and family but they were able to portray their masculine identity in a positive light e.g. finding legitimate jobs, teaching their children what it means to be a real man etc. However, the research found that desisting from gangs is not as easily compared to joining gangs, thus, many gang members find themselves drawn back to the gang lifestyle. Hence, there is a need for the government to produce SMART intervention programs to meet the criminogenic needs of these young gang members and provide resources that will enable gang members to desist from gangs.

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