Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Crips v. Bloods--Conflicts, Alliances, & Globalization

Just some notes for my own purposes, an annotated bibliography. Not a post. Contains only information about the traditional and best-reported gang rivalry. For some reason, I thought globalization would be separate post, but it's too mixed into this bibliography to ignore.

See also Bloods page and Crips page. (Both still in work).  Right now, this bibliography remains elementary compared to the complexities. Updated December 1, 2009.

Folk Nation (Crips, blue) v. People Nation (Bloods, red).
The Piru Street Boys of Compton, California, originally allied with the Crips (c. 1971) until a dispute, and formed new alliances, becoming the Bloods (c. 1972).
Red v. Blue violence is not across the board. Crips have sometimes allied with local Blood sets to resolve a Crip-to-Crip set dispute.

Graffiti, Language:
See also Graffiti Links and Notes in this blog..
Bloods will cross out the letter C in words. Disrespectful term: Krabs, Crabs for the Crips.
Crip spelling: BK stands for Blood Killer; CK stands for Crip Killer. Therefore, in spelling, words ending in -ck are often spelled CC. Words using the letter B will substitute a BK, or, a strike mark or X will be put through the B. (eg, "black"-- Bklacc or Blacc). "Other words or letters are disrespected" (Wikipedia, "Crips")
Disrespectful word: Slobs for the Bloods.

In this example, the Bounty Hunters are a Blood gang from Nickerson Gardens housing project in Watts. (ref LANews). They've called the Crips "crabs" and then crossed them out. ['BH' Bounty Hunters 'CK' Crip Killer] at lower right with the C crossed out. Upper right, I'm not getting it all, but the housing project runs from 111th to 114th Street, so I'm guessing the 112 relates to that. 187, also at top right, refers to the California Penal Code: Sections 187-199 discuss homicides.

It looks like the reporting trend is: in LA, reporting gang violence has turned from black-on-black to black-v. hispanic killings. The Blood v. Crip war is still new in smaller towns around the nation and in other parts of the world, so it is still being reported as such. Most of these reports ignore the "Folk v. People" distinction which may be more important in some regions (east and south of Chicago, perhaps).

--2009, Nov 16--NJ RealTimeNews--Reputed Bloods gang member to stand trial in fatal shooting."
--2009, Nov 10--TheDailyTimes--"Recent high school fight part of gang war, police say." The 9-Treys (Young Bloods) against the West Main Chain Gang (Crips-affiliated) in Salisbury, Md.

--2009, Nov--NewZealandHerald--A fight between Crips and Bloods in New Zealand.

--2007, August 24--FoxNews--"Harlem residents outraged by sale of major league baseball caps with gang colors." Such merchandise tends to add to the conflict by spreading it out to games, arenas, stadiums. it's also about the margin between legitimate and illicit commerce, just as other gang cultural artifacts are.

--2005, Dec. 13--LA News--"Nine Miles and Spreading"--The geographical spread of gangs in LA.

--2005, July 14--LA News--"War and Peace in Watts." The end of the 1992 treaty.
--1992, May 12--NewYorkTimes--"After the Riots: Hope & Fear in LA as Gangs call Truce" Post Rodney King, the gangs get together against the LAPD.

Credit: Blood Piru Knowledge blog, for graffiti and also "drive by" photo. The drive-by photo looks like it came from a film. An entry of August 2009 associated w/  that picture talks briefly of how the Bloods are outnumbered by the Crips in Compton, theorizing that as a condition of future hostility. One thing that isn't faked: the armories for these groups are extremely well-supplied.

Credit: "It's On." This picture is everywhere on the web, but downloaded from Area 51.1 blog, also with an entry that shows rapper gang affiliations. The blog writer is from Romania, which says something about the globalization of culture, if nothing else. And what teens in Romania are doing research on.

From another "Links & Notes post: Alex Alonso of says, (paraphrased) "I've been all over the world. Sometimes I look at a Bloods or Crips gang overseas and know they had somebody from LA teach them. Then others just took it on (the name, the identifiers) as volunteers."

--Gangbangin' 101: Animated Version (can't embed). This is not factual video, but a music video that shows something of the way the two gangs, squared off, view themselves or, how the mythos is spread. (Gladiators.) It is a cartoon of Snoop Doggy Dogg (notable Crip) and Game (notable Blood) trying to talk truce. During the video, Snoop rescues Game from a Crip neighborhood by "driving by"--not a shooting but a rescue. Significantly, alliance is not shown to be about cash or merchandise, but about cars and the individual mobility or decisions of prominent leaders. Our news stories also tend to emphasize alliances or reform movements driven by individuals, when a vast market cooperation and local conditions dictate the real set of alliances. Lyrics here.

--Three minutes of a concert fight, November 22, 2006, by AmerKing 65. Not a spectacular video, just showing the interruption of music/business/progress in a stadium. Calls for "the end of violence" by entertainers aren't necessarily attempts to legitimize in America's political mainstream, but to increase market share and revenue within the gang community and outside it. More on the economic frontier.

--A vast number of videos referencing Crips and Bloods are nonsense--showing how gang culture has entered the mainstream: imitations, parodies by white people in bandanas, even pre-adolescent fights in backyards. None are referenced, but again they show the cultural influence of gangster culture.

--This video from DailyMotion. com. 35 seconds.
From the glamour to something approaching reality.

Web Sites:
--Florida Department of Corrections, "LA-based Gangs: Bloods & Crips." A page on identifiers, minimal but very clear.
--PBS Independent Lens Series. "Crips and Bloods: Made in America" Web site with a page for additional reading and a historical timeline. The timeline give a broad overview only. The series is ongoing, but looks like it follows the intricacies of Los Angeles more than a nationwide rivalry.

**Streetgangs. com. an excerpt from Alex Alonso's work. Black Street Gangs in Los Angeles: A History.


BlackSnow said...

Thanks for mentioning the post about Rappers and Gang Affiliations.

Cool blog you have here.

In Romania many teenagers misunderstand the war between Crips and Bloods and just pretend their gangsta and dace a kind of C-walk which is more like the retarded brother of C-walk.

The sad part is that they do it just to be "cool".

Until you start getting more comments you should deactivate the Word Verification.

Ann T. said...

Dear Black Snow,
Thanks for writing in! I loved your post and thought it very helpful to me and maybe to others trying to reduce crime and gain knowledge. I agree with you about people doing the dance and the talk without understanding. Still I do like some rap music for what it can tell me about the way things are in tough corners.

Unfortunately, in a previous blog I had a lot of bad experiences with Spam of the most sordid kind. I think I'm going to keep all the safeguards. Plus moderating comments means I saw yours right away!!

You helped me out. Best wishes and many thanks to you across the ocean.

Ann T.