History of gangs in United States is as old as U.S history. Today 80% of all crimes in United States are committing by gangs. Gang history in United States is started on big cities like Los Angeles, New York City and Miami and then official pressure forced them to move smaller cities like Houston, Atlanta, Orlando and Memphis. This move was firstly taught as a key to solve the problem. But later this move made the gangs more sophisticated and powerful all over the United States. How many gangs are there in the United States?
Today there are over 30.000 gangs in United States and their member population is over 800.000. Officials report that over %45 of gang members are Hispanics, also it’s possible to see Blacks, Asians and Whites in the gangs. Gangs affection over public started in 1900s. After big street wars occurred for conquering an area, 1920s and 30s are lasted with small gang wars. In 1940s, there were small gangs mostly standing in a street corner and fighting to keep its area safe. They were mostly youth gangs.
Gang activity was raised dramatically with Vietnam War in United States. It was a period that United States were fighting against Vietnam and poverty inside the country. United States officials tried to suspend the voice of revolting hungry people with more and more violence. Violence were especially against Blacks. This period give birth to lots of gangs in United States. Most popular ones were Bloods and Crips.
The Crips became most violent and criminal gang in United States history in a short period. Today they have over 65.000 members. Gang is set on 1969 by Stanley Williams and Raymond Washington. They are involving still in lots of activities from drug dealing to robberies and murders. Crips has a gang signal and they were wearing blue underwear in the first period of gang but today they don’t wear because of police pressure. They grow with lots of small groups join to them. Famous stars like Snoop Dogg, Ice-T and Eazy-E is taught to be former Crips members. They are using Kiswahili language to communicate in prison.
Bloods is founded as a reaction against Crips. They are very different from classic gangs with their wearing style and political ideas. They were mainly a participation of little groups to Bloods against Crips and gang war. After fighting against Crips for years, they started to fight against Hispanic “The Latin Kings” gang who is targeting directly African Americans with violence. They mostly used five star logo.
Latin Kings are the most powerful and organized Hispanic gang in United States now. They are surviving since 1940s. In first period of gangs, members were mostly Puerto Rican males. Then Mexicans joined them. Latin Kings are active in 158 cities of 31 states. They have 35.000 members. They created a religion called “Kingism”. This religion has lots of influences from Marxism and Confucianism. Also there’s Latin Queens. They are a member group of Latin Kings.
Also there are lots of gangs allies in United States history. Gangs use hand signs and graffiti to introduce themselves. Also graffiti in the rival’s area is a source of shame.
Today big police and military operations have weakened strong and organized gangs. But it also let the new gang cliques start and live. Mara Salvatrucha or MS-13 with its public name is one of the biggest gang groups famous for its violence and codes about revenge. Also 18th Street gang became more powerful after operations in 90s and 2000s against big gangs.