Why Do People Join Gangs
Both social and developmental psychologists have become much more interested in finding out the reasons as to why individuals join gang groups. Among the reasons that have become aware of is feeling accepted. Kids joining such groups perform poorly in schools and in most cases are bullies. As a result, teachers and other students tent to avoid them, hence bullies join together to form gangs, or even might be recruited by existing gang groups. The issue of joining gang groups ends up fulfilling basic human need of belonging to a group. Research has shown that, most gangsters group up in single parent homes, not even with their biological parents, hence joining gang group, gives them a circle of friends.
“Most gang members live in communities where gangs are rampant. So joining a gang gives them a circle of friends, identifies them with power in the community, and often is the family that they don’t have. The thing that makes gang membership so enticing also makes it most dangerous” (Ball, & Curry, 230). One of the major reasons why such things happen is that, it provides one with a sense of acceptance. However, this is not saying that, only individuals having no parents, or with single parents joins gang groups.
Taking money has been another reason given. Individuals might join gang groups because of financial needs. There are unemployed individuals, who are desperate out there but need money. Such individuals might be easily convinced into joining gang activities with the aim of getting cash. This cause has the capability of explaining the reason as to why gang activities like drug dealing and theft do exist in poor areas, especially in slums.
Gang members sometimes join while still young due to peer pressure. This can partly be to the fact that, gangs knowingly recruit young, but also, it is a fact that, young people tend to be much susceptible to peer pressure. This is so particularly if they live in gang dominated areas, or even school in the presence of very strong gang. so0metimes, it is very difficult for the youngster to get to know, the harm that exist in joining aging, if such a youngster is worried about losing all his friends. Nevertheless, there are many teenagers who have resisted the temptation of joining gang groups, but there are those who have easily followed the crowd. In most cases, peer pressure has become the driving force behind gang membership mostly in affluent areas.
Boredom has also been named as being a contributing factor. “With nothing else to occupy their time, youths sometimes turn to mischief to entertain themselves. If gangs are already present in the neighborhood, that can provide an outlet. Alternatively, teenagers might form their own gangs. This is why many communities have tried to combat gangs by simply giving kids something to do”.