I was born and raised in the poor town of Kinston, one of the poorest slum towns of the world in a family of six kids. Being the forth born in a family of one bread winner is not a good experience for any kid to experience because of the little attention that I got from my parents who are expected to be the sole source of inspiration. The education system of the town lacked the personal torch as the classes were filled to capacity with inadequate teaching staff. Growing in such an environment makes one to follow the rule of the jungle where survival favors only the fittest. I was forced to harden at an early age and learn from the worlds teachings. Kingston is widely known for its influx in gang over the past decade and for survival purposes any youth joins these gangs to try increasing his chance of survival.
I was no exception and at a tender age of twelve I joined the gang called wolves, the gang was one of the most brutal gangs in the town and my elder brothers were part of it. The initiation was that we had to attack a rival gang and rob them of their possessions, the group of initiates was normally large for the wolves' gang and most of the initiations normally went well. The gang obtained its funding from powerful political leaders, sale of drugs, raids and extortion. To be part of this gang was a privilege for any kid as the life was easy and security due to numbers was abundant. Most of us engaged in drugs and other illegal activities such that we become brain washed in the sense that some of the things we did didn't even seam human, there was total disregard for life and the law. The law of the street determined the day. We engaged in gang battles killing members of other gangs and in case there was a sell out in the group they were killed to serve as examples to others. The police could not control the gang due to their low weaponry and their inadequate numbers in controlling such big populations of people (Covey, 56).
The police was a passive community in this town only there to be accounted for but had no powers, my brother after some time become gang head and life was never better. It was like we were loyalty and untouchable. This was the good life. Until one fateful day, a Friday that looked normal from dawn was to change the rest of my life. I had begun the day normally by collecting the goods and money the gangs normally extorted from the community and other gangs and stored it in the volt. I could fill something in the air was not right but played it down as superstition. Then I heard a big bang that left me partly deaf with smoke all over. This was followed by a series of gun shots that filled the air with thunderous sounds.
I thought this was what they say the end of the world would be like. I felt a familiar voice calling my name as I was dragged to safety as my brother carried me through a secret escape route that had been made for such purposes. I passed out and the last thing I remember was falling to the ground at some point and this was evidenced by the bruises on my arm. I work up in a strange hut in the out skirts of the town a safe house built for emergencies and I had badly been injured. The story was that a major rival gang that had acquired stronger weapons had raided us and in the event killed most of our members. In the attack they had also lost a substantial number of members. The local authority had pounced on this opportunity to correct the wrongs in the community and arrested the remaining survivors. And those who failed to surrender were hunted down like animals causing more deaths. This reduction in number suppressed gang activities and the community for once enjoyed peace (Hagedorn, 76).
The authorities had promised to grant less steep penalties to those who wanted to turn themselves in and provide rehabilitation to those that had been too deep in the drugs. Sentences such as service to the community were imposed and illegal gatherings banned. With the injuries I had joining this program was the breakthrough I wanted as the government promised education as a tool to self reliance. I quit the gang with some of the members and decided that the community had to change and the change had to start from us that caused it so much pain, there are those that refused the offer and continued with the gang activities and viewed us as sell outs and even killed some of us. The near death experience helped me understand that life is precious and when given a second chance opportunity should not be wasted because second chances are rare (Austin, 87).