Psychology

Crime Social Disorganization



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Social disorganization is used by criminal justice professionals to predict trends in criminal behavior. Social disorganization is contributed to by many factors. This paper will explain social disorganization and how social disorganization relates to organized crime and criminal behavior. The connection between corrupt political machines and social disorganization will be explained. The corrupt political machines may directly affect social disorganization and the criminal activity of organized crime groups.

     Social disorganization is a theory in criminology that was brought to light during the 1920’s. Criminal justice professionals and criminologist are concerned with the reason for certain individuals engaging in criminal activity. Social disorganization blames the breakdown on economically challenged neighborhoods within a city. The social disorganization theory explains that poverty stricken neighborhoods can breed crime within a city. The disorganization of a neighborhood consists of churches, schools, businesses, and local politics. Predicting that youth from social disorganized neighborhoods will commit deviant behavior allows criminologists to predict future crime trends.

     Crime could be more prevalent in neighborhoods that have close living conditions such as apartments or duplexes. The crime rate could be greater in areas that have a breakdown in the family unit. Divorce and single parent families can be seen as a breakdown in the family structure. Under the social disorganization theory the affected neighborhoods raise children who are socially disorganized or lacking social structure. The lack of social structure could result in the youth turning to criminal activity out of lack of social control or order. The parent could be working odd hours or many hours at more than one job. The youth are faced with unsupervised idle time. The idle time and lack of supervision will lead to activities that may be deviant in nature. The failure of churches, schools, and businesses in these areas further create social disorganization. Churches and schools have closed in poverty stricken neighborhoods. The students of local schools may find themselves being relocated to other area schools. The relocation can further establish social disorganization for the youth. The youth could find they are not comfortable and unable to establish social connections at the new school. The youth will rebel and commit deviant acts out of frustration of the social disorganization. Social disorganized communities are the breeding grounds for organized crime groups.

     The organized crime groups can control and organize the social disorganized neighborhood for the good of the criminal organization. The organized crime groups can set up business fronts that appear as legitimate businesses. The business fronts can hide the profits from criminal activity. The organized crime groups are seen as a savior in the poverty stricken neighborhoods. The organized crime groups will create jobs and offer businesses protection from outside threats. The organized crime groups monopolize the social disorganized neighborhood. The social disorganized neighborhood creates wealth and power for the organized crime groups. The politicians may play a role in the success of organized crime too.

     The corrupt political machine is referred to as the politician that acts to further their own business, wealth, and power. The organized crime groups will align themselves with the political machine or often become the political machine. The corrupt political machine will thrive in the social disorganized neighborhoods. The social disorganized neighborhood does not expect the service that other neighborhoods receive from politics. The social disorganized neighborhood allows the corrupt political machine to take over much like the organized crime groups. The organized crime groups and the corrupt political machines forge a close working relationship. The social disorganized neighborhood becomes the victim of individual’s lust for power and wealth. Social disorganization can lead to criminal behavior.

     The social disorganization theory is used by criminologists to predict future crime trends. The socially disorganized community is a safe haven for organized crime groups and the corrupt political machine.  The organized crime groups and the corrupt political machines align to create wealth and power for themselves. The socially disorganized neighborhood allows the organized crime groups and the corrupt political machines to coexist.


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