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"Monster" Kody Scott and The Containment Theory
Monster: The Autobiography of an L. A. Gang Member, by Sanyika Shakur (aka Monster Kody Scott), tells the life story of a young black man who lived the life of a gangbanger from the ages of eleven to twenty seven. His story starts with living the life of a gangbanger and ends with a transformation to a member of the New African Independence Movement. Monster Kody, or more accurately referred to as "Monsta," repeatedly commits acts of brutality and violence, mainly against his territorial enemies. Sets are referred to as subsets of larger gangs such as the Crips and the Bloods. For example, Kody's gang, the "Eight Trays" are Crips and they are enemies to the "Rollin Sixties" Crips. In order to be initiated into the "set," "The Eight Trays," Kody is beaten up by members of the gang he desires to be in, which was referred to as being "courted in." (Shakur 9) Then Kody was given a 12-gauge shotgun with pump action, in which he committed his first murder against a rival "set." This was considered a weapon of power and danger, and it required nerve. Kody took to the violence of the gang because he saw it as a step from childhood to manhood, and also as a way to build a reputation. His goal was to become an "OG" by building a reputation, building his name in association with his set, and establishing himself as a promoter of the Crips. His reputation built quickly, mainly because he was a very effective killer. His reputation also became stronger due to the fact that he was shot six times by his rivalries and survived, as well as his various encounters with the prison system. Kody spent many years in the Juvenile Detention Center before he turned eighteen, and a few years in prison after. In these prisons, Kody met Muhammad at a Muslim Service that he originally went to in prison so he could have meetings with his people. Muhammad eventually taught Kody how to educate himself in order to enhance his life. Kody eventually started to grasp Muhammad's teachings about things such as struggling and oppression. Muhammad eventually changed the life of Kody dramatically, and led him away from gang life. Before Kody completely withdrew from his "set," he joined the Consolidated Crip Organization (CCO) in order to try to better the Crip nation. This organization attempts to stop the Crips from fighting each other and unite them for the purpose of destroying the Bloods. Kody was released from his murder term after serving four and a half years out of the original seven-year term that he was supposed to serve. He slowly withdrew from gang activity and settled down with his wife Tamu and his two children. "He became a Nationalist, member of the New African Independence Movement, and Crusader against the causes of gansterism."
The Containment Theory, by Walter Reckless, can be used to explain and understand the behavior of Monster Kody Scott as a member of a delinquent gang. In 1961 Walter Reckless composed the Containment Theory, which explains delinquency as the interplay between two forms of control known as inner and outer containments. This theory also explains how people can be protected from crime. Inner and outer containments help to shield against one's potential deviation from legal and social norms and work to insulate a youth from pressures, pulls, and pushes of deviant influences. Reckless wanted his theory to explain not only delinquency, but also conformity. "Inner containment represents the ability of a person to resist temptations to deviate and to maintain normative loyalty." (Bynum 192) The stronger one's inner containments, the least likely they would be to commit crime. The
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Monster Kody, Sanyika Shakur,
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