To deal with gang violence: let's be part of the solution

Originally appeared on spirituality.com

Urban warfare is nothing new to Los Angeles, where I live. In the 60s, Angelenos were glued to the television as we watched the racially charged Watts riots from the comfort of our living rooms. Then in the 90s, I saw the city burn during what became known as the Rodney King riots. Again racially triggered, this second set of riots pointed to long-standing challenges within the city that were not being addressed: police brutality, poor inner-city education, unemployment, and its resulting poverty.

Gangs aren’t a new phenomenon, and they aren’t unique to Los Angeles or the United States. They’re a problem that needs to be tackled worldwide. Gangs have been associated with major cities in many countries. In Bulgaria, Canada, Brazil, and Pakistan, gang violence has been particularly brutal.

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