August 18, 2002 |
Ten thousand deaths, nearly all African American and Latino young men, is the body count of Los Angeles gang violence in the last two decades, but when was the last time anyone read a headline declaring, "Death Toll in Gang Conflicts Reaches 10,000, Government Proposes Peace Strategy"? Given the silence and disregard concerning these casualties, it is hard to avoid the conclusion that gang deaths are deemed lesser deaths than law-abiding ones. Some people even shrug them off as deserved.
May 24, 1999 |
Visit a market in many Latino neighborhoods across the country and you might come across Homies--tiny Chicano figurines wearing baggy clothes, white T-shirts, bandannas and knit caps. The creator of the 1 3/4-inch-tall cartoonish toys, which are sold in gum ball machines, said Homies are caricatures of real people from Mexican American barrios, like the one near San Jose where he grew up. More than 1 million have been sold since they hit the market four months ago, a distributor says.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
May 8, 1999 |
From the gold crucifixes worn with cool zoot suits in the 1940s to the intricate tattoos of the Virgin of Guadalupe on some gang members today, religious icons have long formed an integral part of Latino youth culture. Holy images can be found throughout Southern California, especially where the Latino population is concentrated. Rosaries dangle around a teenage girl's neck. The face of Christ ringed with a crown of thorns is etched on a young man's arm.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
October 11, 1998 |
Police, teachers and social workers here attribute rising youth gang activity in part to an influx of Hispanic families from California. Ironically, many left California to escape a violent gang subculture but ended up spreading the infection. "A number of families who moved from L.A. brought children who were already involved with gangs," said the Rev.
August 17, 1997 |
No one knows exactly what Hector "El Rosado" Huaracha was thinking when he turned the corner at Fourth and walked northward up Gardenia. The 17-year-old founding member of La Primera gang knew exactly where Primera's territory ended and Florencia's began. Not far from the corner, two homeboys from Rosado's rival barrio were sitting inside a white Ford pickup parked at the curb. Swinging his arms wide and jutting his chin high, Rosado kept walking toward them.
May 8, 1994 |
Surrounded by tin huts and seated near the blue and yellow flames of an outdoor fire, the 18-year-old member of an L.A. tagging crew seemed from another world. Inside a small makeshift funeral parlor was his mother--in a coffin. Her lifeless face was visible through a glass window. Gang members, believed to be affiliated with a Los Angeles street gang, had allegedly shot his mother. But this was not Los Angeles; it was San Salvador, the capital of El Salvador.