Thesis On Gangsterism

Thesis On Gangsterism-71
Requests for the South African Defence Force (SANDF) to enter into gang-infested areas have gone out (itself a problematic request) and is still being deliberated.Meanwhile, gang rehabilitation interventions, as noble and necessary initiatives as they are, have low impact on the reformation of those who enter gangs.

Requests for the South African Defence Force (SANDF) to enter into gang-infested areas have gone out (itself a problematic request) and is still being deliberated.

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Society must allow for and actively encourage positive definitions of manhood. Danielle Hoffmeester is a Masters candidate in Political Studies at the University of the Western Cape.

Until two years ago, her focus centred on issues of security and democracy, in particular how the use and/or threat of weapons of warfare impact on the stability of established and fledgling democracies.

My question sparked a conversation about gangs and gangsterism, in general.

On this sunny day, while on our way to pick strawberries in a town that largely remains cushioned in wealth and wealth that remains racially characterised, we lamented the plight of black people whose daily hardships and stories remain absent in the everyday ‘erudite’ discussions about ways to improve South Africa.

Post-apartheid South Africa continues to be riddled with poverty, unemployment, and substance abuse – factors which impact negatively and disproportionately on the country’s black youth, making them especially easy to persuade into gang activity.

The fascination and eventual initiation into gangs lull young people into a false sense of security, belonging, and power, only to ultimately end their lives.Public perception within these communities are that the police are incompetent or in cahoots with gangs.As much as it pains community members to admit it, many believe that gangs rule their respective areas.Recently again, I heard rumours of an alleged high-ranking gangster moving into my community, and of how people who had resided in the area for most of their lives were now packing up and trying to sell their homes before a gang war broke out- an inevitability, they thought.Despite a police station situated up the road from where these people live, their faith in the capability of officers to effectively prevent and combat gangsterism and its related activities, was low.In a society that lacks opportunity for the majority of South African youth, does the idealisation of the flashy gangster and prosperous thug life inspire young boys and men to adopt the attitudes and actions that will too, in their mind, help them overcome adversity and establish their place in society?Danielle Hoffmeester looks at the societal issues that lead to gangsterism.Apart from understanding how apartheid has disenfranchised black people, and how its consequences of poverty and unemployment intersect and create gangs, it is imperative to consider and comprehend how ideas about manhood and masculinity impact boys, in particular, and how they perceive gangs, and why the latter appeals to them.Gang violence must be understood within the context of entrenched socio-cultural notions about male superiority and privilege, as well as the social impact and legacy of apartheid, political exclusion, and unemployment on generations of young black men.Within the City of Cape Town alone, the number of active gangs are estimated to be in the tens of thousands, and their missions tend to centre drug trade and armed encounters with rival gangs over territory.Their initiation rituals predominantly include murder and rape.


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