The population of the inner city is likely to join gangs.
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The inner city – where do you live?
Response categories are the inner city or other suburbs.
Joining gangs – are you a representative of any gang?
Response categories are yes or no.
Structural Functionalist Theory
Society is a complex system that is focused on stability. In this way, the population of the inner city decides to join gangs to balance the community because the representatives of other suburbs would not do this. Moreover, it means that all people from the inner city and only they will be in gangs because it is their function in society. Thus, this theory fails to explain the hypothesis appropriately.
Society consists of diverse groups that are now equal as they have different resources available, status, etc. As a result, it tends to benefit and hurt others, which leads to conflicts (Crossman, 2016). Thus, people from the inner city are more likely to join gangs because they are deprived and vulnerable in comparison to the population of other suburbs. They make such steps seeking change, more opportunities, and better quality of life.
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Society is formed based on people’s interpretation of each other’s behavior. Individuals interact and share the symbolic meaning of actions, events, etc. so that they start doing some things that interest others and are considered to be cool, for example. In this way, the symbolic interaction would prove that people from the inner city join gangs because it is mainstream, and gangs are considered to be a source of power that they lack. They have more chances to interact with gangs due to their location.
I believe that the conflict theory offers the best explanation because people who live in the inner city lack resources to change their lives for the better. The majority of them join gangs not because they believe them to be cool but because they have no other opportunity to be protected from the harm they can do. They also can achieve more while working together on the same issue.
Crossman, A. (2016). Conflict theory. Web.