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Write an essay on one aspect of the contemporary human geography of North America that demands improvement

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Write an essay on one aspect of the contemporary human geography of North America that demands improvement. Student ID: 99001500 As the United States of America moves into the new millennium the self styled 'leader of the free world' faces a highly complex problem that is threatening to destroy the fabric of its unique urban society. This problem has been developing for many years and has become entwined into the core of American society to such a point where it has virtually become accepted as the norm to the millions of people whose quality of life has been greatly reduced by it. The problem in its most simple form is crime, however, this is evident as a problem that demands improvement in nearly every country throughout the world, so this essay will look closely at the crime problem that has become synonymous with modern day urban America - gang crime. To fully understand the detrimental impacts of gang related crime upon the United States one must first have a good knowledge of the meaning and definition of a gang and the rise of gang crime through American urban history. ...read more.


These scavenger gangs did not have any serious forms of earning money and regularly based their existence on attending parties, fighting other gangs and leaving their trademark graffiti tags across their city. This form of gang is similar to that depicted in the classic film Westside Story, where two rival gangs - the Jets and the Sharks - fought each other over the local neighbourhood or 'turf'. Also, before World War II there was only a small amount of large organized gangs who were based on the principle of monetary gain. These gangs consisted of middle class immigrants (especially Italians from the southern Mezzigiorno region) who by means of extortion, protection rackets and money laundering were able to build established gangs that included different internal divisions and duties. The first half of the 20th century was awash with tales of police corruption when associated with gang crime. If a gang had enough money then they were able to bribe the police and escape imprisonment. Perhaps an indicator of how the gang problem would spiral out of control later in the 20th century was the reaction evident amongst the organised corporate gangs during the Prohibition period. ...read more.


In reality the popularity of Gangsta Rap and the multitude of spin off movies, such as 'Boyz in the Hood' and 'Menace to Society' during the 1990's, only served to intensify the social problems. Gangsta Rap soon became popular with white middle class suburban males, which glamorised the gangster lifestyle in such a way that it had practically become accepted as an American urban tradition. It is obvious that America has failed to solve the problem of gang crime and in fact allowed it to become far worse. Even though it is difficult to obtain sufficient scientific data to accurately analyse the development of gangs over the last century - due to police data not detailing the involvement of gangs - it is glaringly obvious that it is a problem that demands improvement. The consensus of opinion in most gang and crime related texts is that if the majority of gang members are a product of poverty stricken cities then every effort should be made to eliminate the circumstances that lead to poverty, to reduce the likelihood of gang membership. This however raises very complex issues that would only prove how America's reluctance to deal with gangs has led to a colossal social dilemma. ...read more.

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