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Should Gang-Related Nikes Get Banned?

Readers have questioned whether the shoes worn by the boys shot in El Cerrito's BART path on Wednesday were a Nike shoe brand affiliated with gangs and have commented that they should be banned.

In wake of the Wednesday's BART path shooting where two teen boys from Albany High School were shot by two young men along El Cerrito's Ohlone Greenway, readers have questioned whether the attack was over a pair of gang-related shoes.

Albany High Principal Ted Barone sent out a letter to the community after the shooting that said: "What we understand is that they were approached by two men who asked about their shoes."

while the other teen suffered injuries that appeared to be superficial, according to El Cerrito police.

A reader commented saying, "two boys were shot on Monday, in a 'nice neighborhood' in Brentwood, because they were wearing Nike Cortez shoes." The reader said these shoes are symbols of gang affiliation.

The Contra Costa Times reports that a car had pulled up and a passenger asked about the boy's Nike Cortezes, claiming "Gang members like to wear those." The car opened fire among the boys shortly after.

The reader said there are various gang emblems, colors, and other markings that are now being sold by sports clothing stores.

"There is a whole industry now marketing gang-only clothing, with extremely subtle markings, in even the most upscale places," the reader added.

Another reader commented on El Cerrito Patch's Facebook page: "We need to ban gang shoes from [El Cerrito] and Albany."

What do you think about these gang-related shoes and articles of clothing?

Have you seen any that you were able to identify?

Do they need to be banned at schools?

Robert Smith January 28, 2013 at 07:15 PM
Here is some hat-code reading material: http://www.adolescentmind.com/Gang%20Pages/gang_hats.htm
Dorothy Coakley January 28, 2013 at 10:22 PM
Though I very much dislike the recent trend to sensationalize Patch headlines or do "polls" on controversial topics, I would like to observe that this reader-generated "thread" has given us a lot of different (and meaningful) observations. So...kudos to all of you for your thought provoking comments! Long live the online village!
1314 Street Skool January 29, 2013 at 08:42 AM
This is actually a very important topic! No teenager should wear certain colors (esp.red and blue) in certain accessories- UNLESS they represent a gang or are up/down for getting hit up. It is not safe to wear red or blue, as a youth, just because you like those colors. That is the botttom line. As an adult, it's not as risky-though it's NOT risk-free. If you are a parent of a young person- you need to get educated and get involved. - a former gang counselor..There are many online gang education tutorials...
1314 Street Skool January 29, 2013 at 09:02 AM
Addendum: Colors are seen as gang-related in certain accessores, but other clothing could be seen as gang-related, too. QUESTIONS 4 U: Are young people in El Cerrito ( ages..approx 9 and up) feeling a false sense of safety to wear any colors/clothing- without regard to how it might be seen by others who are gang-involved? Are there enough gang education forums for parents/residents? Are there dress codes/color codes in the schools in El Cerrito?
pedrito January 31, 2013 at 10:50 PM
Maybe the nudity advocates in San Francisco have something - unless, of course, the shade of your skin can also be mistaken as a gang color!

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