This Globe and Mail story shocked me when I read it this morning. It concerns the proliferation and extreme violence committed by members of native gangs, specifically groups callings themselves the Indian Posse, the Manitoba Warriors, and the Native Syndicate.
The level of violence they are prepared to commit is heinous, deplorable, and nothing short of terrorism in trying to suppress dissent and co-operation with the police. One women they interviewed has been shot at, beaten twice, and has had her windows smashed and destroyed. Other members of the community have had their homes burned down in a deliberate act of aggression and intimidation. In order to finance their operations, they are involved in drug trafficking and organized prostitution.
Although the story does make it clear that many of the gangs' members are currently in prison (which is a very good thing), it seems they are still involved in directing the operations of the gang from their jail cells.
We as a society can no longer ignore the danger that gangs cause in Canada, especially these native gangs. They are preying on some of the most vulnerable Canadians who have no option to escape and must instead remain on the reserves alongside these criminals, thugs, and terrorists. The courts and corrections systems need to start taking this issue more seriously and put a stop to it. If gang leaders are able to direct the activities of the gang on the streets, then they have obviously been granted far too much latitude and freedom in their facilities. They need to be removed from any communication with the outside world in order to protect innocent victims.
Furthermore, the police need to be much more active in arresting and charging gang members. Once convicted, they need to receive longer and more stringent sentences. Keeping these people out of society and off of the reserves where they carry out their criminal activities and intimidation tactics is crucial to protecting innocent men, women, and children.