A Savvy Portrait of Spreading, Evolving Gangs

| 1/25/2008 2:40:56 PM

Gangs are spreading across the United States, seemingly immune from general decreases in violent crime, advancing a tide of hopeless violence. Writing for the LA Weekly, Peter Landesman delivers a long, sensitively reported piece on the deepening gang crisis.  Landesman reports from the notorious cradle of gang activity, the Watts neighborhood in Los Angeles. He never gets bogged down clichéd assumptions, however, eschewing all caricatures of rap-infused gang life and instead writing about the real, complex causes of gang violence, which frighteningly has become "more codeless, more arbitrary and more brutal than ever" as it spreads outside of its traditional urban strongholds into suburban and rural communities.

Brendan Mackie

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