The Interrupters Essay

In: Social Issues

Submitted By evanbezemer
Words 552
Pages 3
The Violence Interrupters

The film “The Interrupters” by Steve James and Alex Kotlowitz is based on a group of individuals that are part of Ceasefire, a Chicago anti-violence program. Gary Slutkin, the founder of Ceasefire, believes that the spread of violence is very similar to the spread of disease, and so he believes that the treatment should be analogous. In order to stop the infection, one must go after the most infected, the source. The main goal of the violence interrupters is to simply stop killings and to save as many lives as possible. They make it very clear that they are not trying to dismantle gangs. The violence interrupters are made up of individuals who have had many years of jail time in the past, but now want to make a positive difference in their community rather than continue with their lives of crime. The interrupters use their own personal histories to intervene in conflicts before they go too far and turn into violent encounters.

The Violence Interrupters

Challenge the problems with the program:
One of the main problems with the film is that “The Interrupters” are staged on the front lines in their fight to save lives in their communities. This fight is near to impossible to win because although they all put forth their best efforts and put their heart and soul into every individual they try to help, the problem cannot actually be solved, as it exists on a much larger scale. Although the film shows “The Interrupters” doing their best to make a personal connection with each individual they help, they are failing to confront many of the deeper social problems such as flaws in education, and unemployment that are the root of such problems. With reference to Gary Slutkin’s theory of the spread of violence being analogous to the spread of disease. Without making an effort to discover the actual causes of the disease, “The Interrupters”…...

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