A Voice of Reason: Sane Views for a Crazy World

April 10, 2007

Gang War, The Undefined Terrorism

Found this on Booker Rising.

“In a recent issue of American Spectator, conservative writer Ben Stein announced that ‘in the 5-1/2 years since Sept. 11, 2001, there have been roughly 40,000 killings by gangs and gang members in this United States of America, mostly in the African-American and Hispanic sections of large cities.’ Stein goes on to say that the innocent members of those communities, infant to elderly, ‘are living in a nonstop reign of terror.’ It is good that Stein has noticed this and that he is making clear to his conservative readership that it has kept its head in the sand while thumping its chest and declaring its deep resolve to stand up to terrorism…..I have wondered these same things for years and have come to the conclusion that the black and Latino communities have been left on the chopping block of anarchic urban terrorism because the realities of American life now challenge too many prefabricated opinions based on ideas about victimization or lack of individual drive. In other words, we can never ‘blame the victim’ because we all should know that so-called minorities are inevitably helpless to stand up against the economic and environmental circumstances that shape them into a decidedly small percentage who actually join gangs and the drug crews responsible for so many cold-hearted murders. On the other hand, if these people had more pluck and a stronger work ethic they wouldn’t even be there when the bullets fly, killing innocent people of all ages who actually should be living in the suburbs, watching the carnage with their white neighbors. Both ‘visions’ are cowardly. What we need in this time of extraordinary urban and domestic terror is actual leadership focused on the preservation of American lives. One of the first things liberals, conservatives and moderates who would lead need to think about is what they would do if those responsible for nearly 40,000 murders among so-called minorities were not ‘people of color,’ but white gang members and drug posses…..I think that all of those running for President in 2008 need to confront this issue of national terrorism and tell us what they intend to do about it other than wring their hands. This should be a defining issue for both parties and all political persuasions. It is time for those who would lead to lift their heads from the sand of denial and face the harsh murderous light of anarchic terrorism in the big cities of this country.” — Stanley Crouch, moderate-conservative columnist for the New York Daily News

I really think Ben Stein hit the nail on the head, and I know one person who did a great deal to curb gang violence in a major US city. Anyone have an idea who I’m talking about?



  1. Give us a hint?

    Louis Farrakhan?


    Comment by LLR — April 10, 2007 @ 9:43 pm | Reply

  2. naw they will stick with hang wringing it seems that is what they do best!..sigh..great read! 🙂

    Comment by Angel — April 11, 2007 @ 12:38 am | Reply

  3. If we’re talking about youth gangs, I’d like to see the police empowered to come down hard on these kids. All too often, the decision of what to do with “juvenile delinquents” is just to difficult for the community – so their sons and daughter die at a early age, not to mention the trauma to, or deaths of their victims.

    When it comes to older gang members, I’m at a loss to know why they are tolerated. I wish local authorities would not embolden them by referring to them as a “gang” or “gang members.” It’s a badge of honor. I don’t know what to call them but there must be something that is considered disparaging to them.

    Good subject.
    Maggie’s Notebook

    Comment by Maggie M. Thornton — April 11, 2007 @ 1:34 am | Reply

  4. More and more studies now draw a corollary between the growing gang and inner-city violence and the presence of violent rap music, movies, videos within those communities….and funny thing about the entertainment industry that promotes violent rap products: it’s nearly entirely supported by the very liberals who describe themselves as advocates for helping such “at-risk” groups. An insidious part of this irony is that entertainment industry is not likely to take responsibility for thier role in the growing violence, let alone clean itself up. There’s just too much money to be made.

    Comment by lorraine — April 11, 2007 @ 1:34 am | Reply

  5. I have no idea who has done anything to help. I have been impressed with comments I’ve heard credited to Bill Cosby.

    My wife teaches middle school special ed in a low income town. Gangs (mostly African-American – little/no hispanic) exist and these early teenagers are all gang “wannabees”. They look up to the gangs. Gangs give them a sense of belonging, a sense they don’t get at home.

    Coming down on these young gangsters won’t help and coming down on the older ones won’t deter the younger ones. I hate to sound like a bleeding heart liberal, but I believe that we have to give these kids another option.

    Comment by Randy — April 11, 2007 @ 2:39 am | Reply

  6. So many great comments to this topic.

    Randy, you are so right though. Unless these youngsters see a viable option with a future they will be willing to do anything to have a sense of belonging that a gang gives to people. The rap music mentioned by Lorrain also has an impact, and the money that can be made from it, like selling drugs or in street violence for pay is just too lucrative to pass by for too many of these people. What is needed is more than rhetoric. A clearly defined policy by the Administration with input from social, criminal, educational and spiritual leaders is needed to frame a way for the US to deal with this horrific problem. Certainly, this is something that crosses over party lines, and a solution should be crafted. Oh, if only the leaders listened to the people!

    Comment by avoiceofreason — April 11, 2007 @ 3:13 am | Reply

  7. Any correlation between gangs and fathers in the home?

    Comment by Norma — April 16, 2007 @ 11:31 pm | Reply

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