Friday, November 08, 2013

Blog 9: Vigilante Groups in South Africa

The crime rate in South Africa has been increasing significantly and has been known as a country with high rates of violent crime. In Johannesburg, South Africa it has been reported by the New York Times that five people thought to be criminals were killed by an enraged mob in a South African township. A township in South Africa is a suburb or city of predominantly black occupation. The gold mines have closed in the city, meaning a loss of employment for many people and an economic loss. Riots have been frequent and the anger has been directed at local officials for lack of support for the community and the residents. New York Times continued to disclose a police statement that said “about 400 men had gathered in an open field to air their grievances about gangsters in the area and then split up into vigilante groups.” The groups killed five people total, burning three and stoning two.

The problem lies in the government and how they are unable to control the crime rate and the population. Looking at it from a sociological perspective, the poverty has caused the community to report to crime and violence as a way to adapt to the hard times. Also mentioned is the fact that these riots and vigilante groups have been birthed within South African townships, where majority of the population are black. It brings in an inequality issue of race and class that society has created for black people.


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