Law: Parasites on Their Own People

Gangs Are Tougher, Better Armed and More Violent Than Ever

Chicago's Humboldt Park is a dangerous area, but last March Blanca Ibarra and her family felt safe enough to troop to a photo studio near the park. It was Ibarra's 15th birthday, and the family wanted to record the event. Two jittery gang members, under the impression that a rival group was gathering, opened fire, wounding two and killing one. In cities large and small, the surge of new immigrants has led to a sharp rise in crimes committed by ethnic gangs. In earlier waves of migration, the members were Irish, Jewish and Italian. Now they are primarily Hispanic and, increasingly,...

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