We talked to hundreds of prison gang members – this is what they said about life behind the bar


<スパンクラス="キャプション">A student of the Texas Prison Ministry Program. Some prisoners cite religion to avoid recruiting gangsters.</ span> <span class ="帰属"> <クラス="リンクrapid-noclick-resp" href ="https://www.gettyimages.com/detail/news-photo/male-inmate-students-of-a-christian-ministry-program-inside-news-photo/539557464?adppopup=true" rel ="nofollow noopener" target ="_空欄" data-ylk ="slk:Robert Daemmrich Photography Inc / Corbis via Getty Images">  Robert Daemmrich Photography Inc / Corbis via Getty Images </a> </ span>“src =” https://s.yimg.com/ny/api/res/1.2/US0dXl0Yqija2Tk9ezJhPA–/YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTcwNTtoPTQ0Ni4wMTA0MTY2NjY2NjY3/https://s. Zkg-~ B / aD05MTE7dz0xNDQwO2FwcGlkPXl0YWNoeW9u / https://media.zenfs.com/en/the_conversation_us_articles_815/17bb43988cf1e33199382868acc3ad41 “data-src=”https://s.yimg.com/nyq9 /YXBwaWQ9aGlnaGxhbmRlcjt3PTcwNTtoPTQ0Ni4wMTA0MTY2NjY2NjY3/https://s.yimg.com/uu/api/res/1.2/4EoAI7.LTlwQiQHBVe.Zkg–~B/aD05MTE7dz0xNDQwO2FwcGlkPXl0YWNoeW9u/https://media.zenfs.com/en/the_conversation_us_articles_815/17bb43988cf1e33199382868acc3ad41″/ ></div>
<p>United States of America <a href=Imprison most of its citizens More than any other developed country in the world 1.5 million people Working hours in prison.But for those who aren’t working or living in a facility, living behind the bar is mostly Mysteries..People can only get a glimpse of their inner life Riot, Execution Also scandal..

NS Criminologist, we I spent nine months interviewing more than 800 prisoners in Texas in 2016. They talked about their lives before and during prison and their imminent return to the community. Over 600,000 people every year..

I also learned about gangsters, an important reality in prisons.

our BookPublished in 2020, the curtain closes on how gangs compete for the management and structuring of prison life. Gangsters use force behind the sticks, but they are more fractured and out of control than people believe.

Enter and exit

Despite the fairly extensive research on street gangs, there are few studies on gangsters in prisons.

Doing research in prison is rare because it is difficult to access. Prison officials tend to hate risk and hate getting outsiders inside the wall. Even if a researcher comes in, the prisoner may not attend the interview. If the topic is a gangster, these problems are even greater.

It wasn’t our experience. About half of the interviewees were associated with gangsters. Gang and non-gang prisoners said, “I want to talk to you rather than sit in my cell.” They regarded the interview as catharsis. They were able to “pull things down” at a neutral party.

“Year of War”

Prison gangsters Mass imprisonment In the 1980s. Texas prisons were almost free of gangsters until the outbreak of a bloody battle between the Mexican Mafia and the Texas Syndicate, and between Aryan Brotherhood and the Mandingo Warrior between 1984 and 1985. 52 prisoners were killed in 21 months, “Year of war.. “

Over 50 different gangs participated in our study. Most of these gangs were active in prisons and on the streets. All twelve “security threat groups,” or STGs called by prison officials, fit into the classic view of organized, conspiracy and violent prison gangs. The rest of the gang is called a “creek”. When a security threat group is like a criminal organization, a faction is like a group of criminals without clear leadership, direction, or structure.

Race and ethnicity were important to all gangsters. Geographical proximity A great social sorter for street gangs. It’s race and ethnicity for prison gangs. Almost all prison gangs consisted of a single race or ethnic group.

The people we talked to revealed that Texas prison gangs weren’t what they once were. Prison gangs were described as “watered down” and lacked teeth to enforce rules, especially security threat groups. A few prisoners, including members of the gang, believed that the gang brought order to the prisons and made them safer. Frequently made claims about prison gangsters.. The perception of power is stronger than that reality.

Power to swing

Gangsters may not be able to control prison life with Tekken, but it is a mistake to think they lack influence. If the members of the gang make up only a small number of prisoners, how does about 20% of Texas exercise power, according to our research?


Gangsters use violence to settle disputes, discipline members and protect their interests. The story of violence has been passed down from generation to generation to ensure that memories remain alive. The “Year of War” happened more than 30 years ago, but it is still very close to the hearts of the people we interviewed.

Gangsters bring different flavors to prison violence. It has a multiplier effect. Violent incidents involving gang members expand the pool of future victims and criminals because of the collective gang identity. Being in a gang means taking on these responsibilities.

Join the gang

For beginners Prison is scary.. People are stripped of their identities, roles and positions.About half of the prison population has been convicted Violent crime.. Joining a gang seems like a pretty good decision.

According to our research, about 10% of Texas prisoners joined the gang in prison for the first time, and another 10% imported gang affiliations from the streets. Identity and protection were common reasons for joining gangsters in prison, as on the streets. But ideologies that we rarely observe, such as racial supremacy and vigilantism, were also important. Street gang..

Still, most prisoners do not become gangsters. It’s harder to avoid gangsters in prison than on the street, but that’s true. Non-gang members are “checked” for affiliation and are often hired when they step into a prison unit. Those who want to avoid gangsters cite their religion, homosexuality, and even their status as sex offenders as reasons for not participating. Most gangs ban prisoners convicted of sex crimes.

Shed blood, shed blood

It was once believed that you would join the gang You could never leave..Criminologist Dispelled this myth Among street gangs; young people leave the gang on a regular basis and usually have no violent effects. We also found that this was the case in prisons, even for security threat groups.

Disillusionment is the main reason for leaving. Members of the gang eventually find that the gang is selling invoices for the goods. Snitching, victims, solitary confinement, and delayed parole embody dissatisfaction with the gang’s life.

Leaving the gang is more difficult in prison. Leaving is not a reliable option. Members of the gang participated in the two-year evacuation program of the prison system, or asked for permission or “notice” of their intention to leave.

Block on-ramp and open off-ramp

Despite decades of effort, breaking control of gangsters in prison has been unsuccessful. The “silver bullet” simply doesn’t exist.

Place gang members Solitary confinement Though considered a solution, it is a management approach. It applies band-aid to gunshot wounds that can hurt more than help. And a versatile approach to rehabilitation ignores the gang’s baggage. [Deep knowledge, daily. Sign up for The Conversation’s newsletter.]

Gangsters need numbers to vie for control. Therefore, focusing on the entrance and exit can reduce the power of the gang to attract new members and encourage the current members to leave.

If you do nothing, the problem will only get worse and grow.Today’s prisoners are finally Neighbors, religious congregations and employees tomorrow’s. We want people to leave prison in a better condition than they arrived. That means an effective response to the gang.

This article will be republished from conversation, A non-profit news site aimed at sharing ideas from academic experts. It was written by: David Pirose, University of Colorado at Boulder When Scott H. Decker, Arizona State University..

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David Pyrooz has received research grants from the City of Denver’s Department of Public Security, the National Department of Justice (US Department of Justice), the Charleskoch Foundation, and the National Institute of Child Health and Welfare (US) over the past five years. Ministry of Health and Social Welfare).

Scott H. Decker is funded by the National Institute of Justice and the Arizona State University Foundation.