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August 29, 2008




Thanks for portraying these kids the way they should be portrayed.

Its Funny

How can you take this article serious when Matthew McLaughlin, the author of the whole transcript is part of the DVS gang that runs around terrorizing the yuppies lol? Thats like listening to a priest give you a lesson on sex ed. Also mentioning these little kids in the article is not that smart either because even though it might seem like a long shot; people are gonna view this as "snitching" which now a days in one of the worst offenses in the streets towards most these gang bangers.


Matt is not a bad guy, he's just a wannabe organizer of the oppressed masses. Effective organizers respect and talk to all sides, they try to create unity in the community. Matt has a big chip on his shoulder. He and his bros appear to hate anyone who has been more successful than they have been in life.

Brian Spelling III

Great story matt!!! These young kids in Somerville dont know what they are getting themselves in. When you claim a gang, colors alot comes with it and most of these kids dont understand that. these other crazy guys in the mystic projects and lower east somerville (i.e H-Block gang, MS13, 18th street gang) arent playing games. stay out of gangs, they arent the way to go


To Somervillen00b: that sounds about right. Those guys are angry and are doing what they think is right for their community. What they don't understand is that Somerville has dozens of communities now. My street has newcomers, young families, immigrants, students, long time residents and even a small time drug dealer. Somerville is home to all kinds of people from all walks of life and that's what makes it a cool place. There is no place here for wannabe gangsters beating up people on the bike path or hanging out wasting time in parks. Get a life.


well the border patrol is around i seen 1 last week in east somerville atleast they can start by deporting some of these so called gang members like ms-13

Somerville Resident

What does the DVS stand for? I have seen it around somerville but especially around Lexington Park.


I think most people are aware the reasons why kids are falling into the lure of violent gangs. Unfortunately what we do not address is ways to prevent kids from becoming involved.

I do not know much about the author, but if he is a community organizer I would like his perspective on how to keep kids out of gangs, fake, real or somewhere in between. This is where he, with his (assumed) knowledge of what is going on with these kids can make a real difference.

The community needs to be an advocate for kids and make sure that they have other options presented to them. Parents, kids and community members need to know what is going on and how close it is to their homes. If these people understand and become interested a change can happen.

We all have to do our part: funding before and after school activities, local and regional sports. Volunteering with organizations dedicated to helping youth like Big Brother/Big sisters or sports teams. Work with civil and religious authorities to actiivly work against gangs and gang violence.

I know this is idealistic, but without ideals what do individuals or a community have to aspire to?

glen st.

i'm not an old foagie, but this gangsta rap motif is garbage.

most of these kids are following after these rap star millionaires who are getting rich glorifying the gangsta life. and all of this street violence stuff is part of that act.

i've seen local kids, the "'villens", doing public performances a couple of times. and so much of it is that same kind of garbage. if a teenager ( ie a child) is going on and on about how their 'hood' is a "war zone", and poppin' caps in peoples heads and hustlin' to survive, you gotta wonder where they are getting this crap from.

yeah, there have been a couple of kids in a city of 100,000 die too young. and that is a terrible tragedy. but somerville a "war zone"? that is nuts.

all of this 'defending my corner' mentality isn't livin' the g life like millionaire 50 cent, it's living the life of a loser circa charlestown 1975. if it seems like the rest of the city doesn't get that somerville is war zone and a daily struggle to "survive", maybe it's because it is not. and it is these children that have been warped into thinking that way.


Kids feel powerless, gangs make them feel powerful. I always hear people talking about options for kids and I don't understand it.Kids have plenty of options.Unless you are talking about some other life where parents have unlimited money to spend on whatever activity the kid wants to get into. However, A normal kid knows when he/she is doing something wrong. If he/she chooses to do wrong for the sake of making a "reputation" for him/herself in order to feel safer and more of a sense of control of outcomes on the streets well then that is just the way it is. What do you think can change this? A kid either has a propensity towards trouble and violence or he/she doesn't. It has always been cooler to join a gang than to join the boy scouts. I am in no way advocating gangs or trouble. I am merely expressing some opinions on the matter.

p.s I also take issue with Matt M. and Somervillnoob. I would like to know what constitues a real "thug" OR "gangster". Do you have to live in a certain place like South Central LA or just have to kill somebody. I don't get. There is nothing fake here. One day an innocent kid the next day a violent killer. Psychopaths are 1 out of 100 and they feel no guilt or remorse.


Kids that have parents that care do not get involved with gangs. It is as simple as that....Unfortunately any idiot can get preganant and have kids. Gangs will ALWAYS be around. It's like trying to eradicate poverty or child's never gonna happen.

Bill Shelton

1. I believe in a zero-tolerance policy for youth violence. Yes, if a young person gets into some minor trouble, give them a second chance. But if they are willing to use deadly force, then they should be dealt with harshly, with little consideration for their juvenile status.

2. Matt's article offers the kind of insight that is necessary to effectively fight gang violence, and it's the only example of that kind of reporting that I have ever seen in Somerville. The Police Chief himself will tell you, and has told Somerville News staff, that simply rousting anyone who emulates a gang member will result in larger problems long term. The challenge is to understand the real dynamics, which both the Chief and Matt are doing.

3. Those who have slandered Matt here just don't know him. Matt and his "bros" have been peacefully and actively attempting to make Somerville better. I wonder how much those who have criticized him are doing, other than writing derogatory posts.

Yorktown Street

I agree with Bill: find out what Matt and the SOS folks are up to before you stereotype them. They are clear that Save Our Somerville means ours, for all of us. They are also clear that youth are part of "us." Good for them for speaking up. They don't have to get everything right for us to listen to them.

Somerville Resident

I'm tired of people trashing Matt M. and SOS, they do a lot of good with the teenagers that don't have any set programs. That's the age where they start to go bad unless they are kept interested in things. This Saturday is the Basketball Tournament at Lexington Park. The kids love it and look forward to it. Keep up the Good Work Matt!!

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