What Are Some of the Reasons Why People Join Gangs?


Quick Answer

Some of the reasons why people may join gangs include desire for protection, family tradition, peer pressure, lack of a basic need, excitement and desire to be popular. These causes may be facilitated by high-risk factors such as unemployment, domestic violence, negative friend network, poor academic performance and poverty.

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Full Answer

Desire for Protection: when an individual feels a lack of security in the neighborhood he or she may opt to join a gang in order to feel safe or benefit from the gang's numbers and intimidation power.

Family Tradition: a person whose family members have previously been members of a gang is likely to join one since he or she will feel like it's the right thing to do. Such a person gets his or her values from what he or she sees other family members doing.

Lack of a Basic Need: whether it's food, shelter or clothing, a person may opt to join a gang in order to increase his or her chances of getting whatever they lack.

Peer Pressure: if an individual's friends belong to or join a gang, they may influence him or her to follow suit. The individual may give in to peer pressure in order to preserve the friendship.

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