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Minority Report

Gangster Rap
The Road to Oblivion
Author: Anonymous

Many teens in Watsonville are involved in gangs. They 
may think being part of a gang is a cool thing. They 
may see that people are afraid of gangsters because 
gangsters look tuff and seem to have no pity over 
others. And the teens that belong in gangs feel cool 
as they cruise around Watson bumping their 
gangster music. Teens may seek the respect and 
toughness that a gang may offer, but in the end they 
will find that being a part of a gang always leads 
Nowadays, gang activity is all about drugs, making the 
feria, respecto, getting tattoos, representing 
your ‘hood and risking one’s life for one’s barrio. 
Gangster life is all about having an image and 
receiving respect from others.
How does a person become a member of a gang? First, 
you must meet with the people who are part of the gang 
you want to join, maybe the “Sureños or Norteños,” and 
then you get the beating of a lifetime. Everyone 
attacks you without mercy. After a teen gets jumped 
into a gang things begin to change, starting with the 
way they look. The home-girl will start wearing baggy 
pants and extra large T-shirts. They will use black 
eye liner for their eyebrows, eyeliner and also as 
lipstick. The eyes to a girl in a gang represent a 
lot. A girl will show her attitude by how she uses eye 
shadow, thickness of color in the eyeliner and amount 
of black color around the eye, which then helps shape 
the face and especially the eyes. 
The new onda of the homies is the 
hairstyle. Las home girls help each other look good, 
that is to say, that they will completely change their 
natural hair color by using dyes. A girl may choose to 
dye her hair to blonde, bleach blonde, orange blonde 
or a dark charcoal black. Girls in gangs like to have 
their hair long; rarely do see a home girl with short 
hair; it’s just not sexy having short hair. 
A 16-year-old home girl—who I’ll call Shannon—told me 
how she went through a transformation from her “normal 
self” to the home girl look. Shannon would go to 
school everyday and pass her classes. She did not wear 
any make-up; she had nice dark brown hair and full 
dark eyebrows. She would wear the latest “in” fashions 
and she was nice to people, always smiling. But then 
Shannon started to hang out with friends who belonged 
to a gang and she started to like guys who belonged in 
a gang, admiring how they dressed. 
Soon her image began to change. She bleached her hair 
with peroxide, her eyebrows became paper-thin, and she 
began to wear clothes with less color, preferring 
black clothes. Her big brown eyes became shaded with 
eyeliner and darkened with eye shadow. Shannon was no 
longer the same innocent girl she once was. She now 
looked like one of the homies, she was known 
as “La Morena.” La Morena began getting 
more attention from others and began to claim. But 
then she started having problems with girls from the 
opposite gang. Girls from the other side who went to 
her school wanted to beat her up because she was “one 
of them.” One day a strong girl from the other gang 
pushed La Morena like it was an accident but 
then La Morena responded with a “B***H” so the big 
girl got mad and they started to fight. They both were 
suspended from school. 
La Morena began getting into a lot of trouble 
and did not realize that she was making her life 
harder. After years of hurting people she knew, she 
finally began to regret all the bad stuff she did in 
the past and wishes she could go back to the way it 
was before being Simplemente Shannon.
When a young teenager enters a gang, they normally 
don’t think they will not be able to walk around their 
local neighborhood. But being in a gang is all about 
being safe and having your back watched by your raza. 
Being in a gang is about owning your territory; 
whether you dress in RED or BLUE, the streets are 
owned by you. But these colors may also give the green 
light for the opposite gang to jump you. Then you hope 
that your homies are always going to back you 
up. But your homegirls and homeboys are not always 
going to be there for you when you need them. You will 
realize that your so-called homies are not your 
true familia, your true raza. They are not going to be 
visiting you when you are locked up or when you are in 
the hospital. We all think, at first, when you join a 
gang that your homies will back you up no matter what, 
but when you are in a sticky situation you’ll see that 
it was a false promise. Too many guys and girls who 
are in gangs are getting locked up, in the hospital, 
in the juvenile system, in jail, or even may die for 
making bad choices.
When a teen gets in a gang he or she will believe it 
is a good thing in their life. But being in a gang 
will bring misery to you and your family. Don’t treat 
your family like any other person that you don’t care 
about because they will be there for you when times 
are tough, when your homies leave you all alone.