Gang Symbols

Is your kid in a gang? There are different ways to tell but the main tell-tale signs have to do with the symbols and signs that your kid is wearing. Signs and symbols are essential to gang mentality and street culture.

If you want to figure out if your kid is in a gang there are certain things you might want to take a look at.

First off, does your kid have a tattoo? Tattoos are used to brand gang members. They are symbolic in nature. Some tattoos symbolize specific goals or deeds carried out by members. Others symbolize the meaning or mythology behind the gang/ For instance the Folk Nation gang bears a Star of David because it was founded by a ruffian named King David (not the real one from the Bible – a street version of the man.) If your kid has an hourglass he might belong to the North Carolina Hoodies. The Elizabeth City Mafia also boast an hourglass tattoo.

Of course these tattoos change from neighborhood to neighborhood. If you see a bunch of kids with the same tattoo it could be that you are looking at members of a gang. It does not matter if you are in a big city or small town. Very few places in life are gang-proof nowadays.

Is your kid into graffiti? Spraying paint on walls is called 'tagging.' Like tattoos it is very symbolic in nature and often used to mark territories or send out threats to rival gangs. Common graffiti uses to symbolize gangs are the heart and the walking cane.

If you kid is using hand signs he might belong to a gang. Two of the most popular gestures used are 'stacking' or 'throwing up. These hand signs are used to show that a gang member wants to do some kind of business. Street gangs also have their own special handshakes so people can recognize each other. In fact if you are on a street and you notice a lot of hand signals you may want to get out of there…it could be a sign that a gang war is about to develop.

The FBI or Federal Bureau of Investigation defined street gang is a criminal enterprise that has an organizational structure that employs violence and any form of criminal activity so as to sustain the enterprise. I don't know about you, but I don't want my kids to be part of an organization whose main function is violence and criminal activity. So keep your eyes open to detect the signs and symbols that your kid might be part of a street gang.