The Impact of Gangs in Mexico

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“The Impact of Mexican Gangs”

Nathan Katica

March 25, 2010

Language Arts

6th Period

        Four years ago, Claudia Wallace’s brother Hugo was kidnapped and murdered by a Mexican gang. Claudia, her husband, and her children now live behind large concrete walls. She and her family have been threatened and shot at by the gang. This is just one example of gangs’ effect on society. Gangs should be eliminated entirely. What exactly is a gang? How did gangs originate in Mexico and how long have they existed?

        A gang is an organized group of criminals that band together for mutual protection, and perform criminal acts for profit. Mexican gangs originated in the late 19th century, because groups of poor people needed a source of money and fellowship that was devoid in their own family. In addition, these groups of underprivileged people fought each other over the customers that bought drugs, routes for transporting drugs, modes of transport, drug sources, and hit men. Eventually, the fighting led to the formation of allies, now known as gangs, in which resources were shared by all members. The Gulf Cartel, located in Reynosa, Mexico, is an example of a modern gang. In this gang, trade routes on the West Coast are used to illegally smuggle drugs; they travel all the way to California. On the other hand, Arrellano Felix of Tijuana uses trade routes in
Central Mexico that travel to Texas; they wouldn’t dare encroach on the Gulf Cartel’s trade routes, because it could lead to war between the gangs. There are many reasons why participation in a gang and a drug cartel’s employment of a gang constitute mental, modern day slavery.

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        Members of a gang are often forced to perform tasks they do not want to do, sometimes as part of initiation, or the entrance into a gang. These tasks can include robbery, murder, and kidnapping, or sexual intercourse for women. Gangs often engage with violence with other gangs, and this is a threat to gang members’ health. Once inside a gang, it is almost impossible to get out of it. If gang leaders discover that a member tried to desert the gang, consequences can be a beating, death, or public humiliation. Members of a gang can get in trouble with ...

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