Sunday, July 31, 2016

Gangs Make Peace

Rapper The Game along with anti-gang activists, Police Chief Charlie Beck, Will.I.Am., and rival Los Angeles gang members gathered at a community center this month to bring an end to gang violence. The Game shared a powerful story about the recent loss of a former gang member he grew up with in foster care before calling on the crowd to make the world a better, less violent place. Some 2,500 responded to his invitation by arriving at the summit. Back in the era of Rodney King and the LA Riots of 1992, hundreds of young black men from warring factions of the Blood and Crip gangs gathered not to protest the Rodney King beating, but to declare a ceasefire. This new peace treaty included Crips, Bloods and ESEs. In a graphic example of change, a Blood and a Crip took off their red and blue T-shirts, handed them to each other and embraced in friendship. Reportedly, The Game, whose real name is Jayceon Terrell Taylor, has been vocal about building a better bridge between police and their community. He and Snoop Dogg led a march to police headquarters in Los Angeles earlier this month following the deaths of Alton Sterling and Philando Castle. They met with the mayor and police chief to discuss ways to improve things between cops and minorities. The LA police chief said about 1,000 people were shot last year. Almost 300 of them died and 80 percent of the victims and 80 percent of the shooters were young men of color. See news stories here-- and and