Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Where Gangs Are

"The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing."-Albert Einstein

Wherever there are broken families, disenfranchised youth, and an adult to organize and manipulate. Wherever there are churches who remain firmly encased behind their stain glassed windows.

Wherever a parent does not provide structure and discipline balanced carefully with love. Wherever there are fathers who are absent. Wherever there are authorities who are more interested in keeping their jobs than revealing the truth. Wherever there are children unsupervised for hours at a time.

Wherever there are politicians more interested in getting votes than addressing the issues. Wherever there are media outlets who ignore violence in “that part of town.” Wherever there are kids who have no one to turn to during times of crisis.

Wherever there is child abuse, neglect, and domestic violence. Wherever there are adults who are more interested in buying thousands of dollars worth of rims than keeping kids off of drugs. Wherever there are parents who would rather be “friends” than parents. Wherever there are role models who claim that they are not.

Wherever there are communities that look the other way. Wherever there are communities that invest more in “Welcome to our town” signs than school programs. Wherever there are houses of worship that are more interested in buying thousands of dollars worth of decorations than in building women’s shelters.

Wherever there is apathy. Wherever there is unchecked rage. Wherever there is ignorance. Wherever there is someone willing to look the other way.

That is where gangs can form. That is where gangs can grow. And that is where kids die and violence becomes a way of life.

Big cities. Small towns. Across both sides of the tracks. Lower class, middle class, and upper class. Ghettos, suburbs, gated communities.

In your backyard. That is where gangs are.