Photo By John Hoff
At the September 25 Hawthorne Annual Meeting, Inspector Mike Martin gave the keynote address, which focused on the factors predisposing youth to gang affiliation.
According to Martin, there was a study performed in 1927 by Fredrick Thrasher, and all subsequent studies--often performed at great cost--continue to reiterate with Thrasher learned in the late 1920s. Here are the factors:
1.) Deteriorating neighborhoods.
2.) Inadequate recreation.
3.) Ineffective religion.
4.) Lack of parental control.
Martin discussed each of the factors, touching only lightly on the religion factor. Martin said what's important is "spirituality," a simple sense there are things bigger than yourself which turn you toward moral behavior. He urged residents to try more approaches with kids than simply calling 911 when they are hanging out on corners.
Martin also took questions from the audience, addressing topics like more use of mobile cameras and police/community relations.