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Word Count: 531
Gang related incidents have been a chronic problem throughout the United States for several years now Los Angeles perhaps the area most troubled by gang violence in the country is once again in the news On September 17 1995 3-year-old Stephanie Kuhen was with her younger brother 2-year-old Joseph Kuhen when the driver of the car taking them home made a wrong turn early Sunday morning Gang members surrounded the vehicle blocked the drivers escape and opened fire Stephanie Kuhen was killed and Joseph was shot through the ankle Currently there are four members of the gang known as the Mexican mafia in custody Los Angeles Police Chief Willie Williams called the gang vicious saying they have terrorized the neighborhood for years1 On September 27 1995 the Los Angeles Times printed one response to the shooting written by two emergency physicians H Range Hutson MD and Deirdre Anglin MD who were deeply saddened by the shooting The strongest argument presented in the letter written by Hutson and Anglin was that unless the root causes of gang formation are effectively addressed and gang access to illegally obtained firearms is nullified gang violence will continue The claim was presented in such a fashion that while based on widely accepted ideas an appeal to the emotions through sympathy for the injured children was also applied To justify their claim statistics such as 28 children under the age of 10 were murdered between 1987 and 1994 95 of which were murdered with firearms and over half the murders were done as drive- byes Unfortunately the means to correct even one of these problems was not included Hutson and Anglin do cite what they consider to be the root causes of gang formation poverty stressed families unemployment underemployment lack of education racism and a breakdown of sociocultural institutions However they do not provide any justification for their root causes thus assuming that the reader
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