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God's GangsBarrio Ministry, Masculinity, and Gang Recovery$
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Edward Orozco Flores

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9781479850099

Published to NYU Press Scholarship Online: March 2016

DOI: 10.18574/nyu/9781479850099.001.0001

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The Latino Crime Threat

The Latino Crime Threat

A Century of Race, Marginality, and Public Policy in Los Angeles

(p.31) 1 The Latino Crime Threat
God's Gangs

Edward Orozco Flores

NYU Press

This chapter investigates how poverty, marginality, and gangs have been long-standing features of Los Angeles's Eastside barrios—an area where most of the Chicano gangs originate. It argues that Latino marginality, despite being a concern of early social reformers, persisted due to the racialized nature of public policies and political platforms. Early-twentieth-century social policies that emerged due to the Civil Rights Movement eased integration for Southern and Eastern European immigrants, but left Latinos deeply marginalized. The Movement flourished, but so did white resistance against it, centrally expressed through the rise of coded, antiminority suppression tactics aimed at blacks and Latinos. The chapter examines how the crime policy debates gave rise to notions of street criminals as lacking the ability to reform, and how this disproportionately targeted blacks and Latinos through the wars on drugs, crime, and terrorism.

Keywords:   poverty, marginality, gangs, Los Angeles, Eastside barrios, Chicano gangs, Latino, black, Civil Rights Movement, white resistance

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