October 9, 2007
Companies market products to gang members
Augusta, Ga. – Gang violence is an increasing problem in today’s society—a problem that some say is promoted by companies looking to cash in on gang identification. A blatant attempt was publicized in late August when Harlem residents rallied against New Era, a manufacturer of baseball caps, and the New York Yankees. Yankee baseball caps that featured colors and symbols for some of the nation’s most notorious street gangs were on store shelves.
What does this new marketing technique mean for today’s youth and for society? Are more subtle gang references finding their way into advertising? Two Augusta Sate University faculty members offer insight into this marketing trend.
Clint Bryant, director of athletics, has spoken to numerous groups on this topic that has become a personal area of interest. Mr. Bryant serves on the Board of Directors of both the Augusta Boys Club and Augusta Boxing Club and is a past president of the 100 Black Men of Augusta, Inc. Charles Case is an associate professor of sociology and is a recognized expert in the social aspect of crime as well as popular culture.
If you would like to pursue this topic, call Kristopher Wells, information specialist, in ASU’s Office of Public Relations and Publications, at 706-667-4821.