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What Causes Chicanos to Join Gangs and How Does That Decision Affect Their Lives It is a cold and dark night in East Los Angeles The streets are empty except for a few people on their way home Then out of the shadows comes a car slowly driving down the streets There are four young men heavily armed just waiting for a target to come along At a nearby house a rival gang member comes out of his home for a cigarette One of the Gs gang member in the car recognizes him as the man that shot one of his homies fellow gang member at a party the previous week The car speeds by and the vatos men in the car open fire on the individual The sounds of gunshots can be heard all around the nearby streets He is hit once in the head and dies instantly His wife and children hear the shots and come out to find their father lying lifeless on the ground One man is dead a woman is widowed three children are now without a father and four young men are now on the run from the law This is what life is like inside a gang This is their future But gang members are not the only victims to street violence their family their children their friends and loved ones and countless of innocent by-standers are all victims to gang warfare Knowing all of this it is inconceivable why anyone would want to join a gang but countless teens do What is it that causes a person to join a gang and how will that decision affect his or her life Before we can start to understand why young Chicanos Mexican-Americans join gangs we must first understand what a gang truly is According to Bullet a gang is a group formed by groups of friends and acquaintances whose main purpose is to take control of a
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