Snoop Dogg once admitted he was always scared when in a gang
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Snoop Dogg once admitted he was always scared when in a gang

Snoop Dogg is known for his previous affiliations with the Crips. The gang alliance originated in and around Los Angeles during the 1960s. Since its inception, it has been a permanent fixture in African-American communities. However, there were other alliances formed in the area during this period. The Bloods emerged shortly after the Crips, and an extremely toxic rivalry culminated over time.

Certain areas and neighbourhoods in and around LA were pegged to particular gangs, and before long, subsets started to form with different types of Crips and Bloods running various areas. Snoop Dogg was born and raised in Long Beach., a small coastal city in the greater Los Angeles region. The musician (real name Calvin Broadus) has expressed on numerous occasions that his neighbourhood was run by the Crips and, by association, became part of the criminal gang.

Crips and Bloods (represented by the colours blue and red, respectively) live by strict codes that prohibit them from befriending, engaging and associating with anyone belonging to their rival gang. An encounter with any individual from a rival gang warrants murder. For many, including Snoop, knowing that you could end up dead at any moment is scary. Although Broadus has continually reaffirmed his allegiance to the Crips in an interview on The Howard Stern Show, Snoop Dogg revealed how he ended up as a Crip and unveiled that he hated the lifestyle while living it.

Opening up to Stern in the 2018 interview, the Doggystyle icon revealed how he idolised the older people in his neighbourhood as he explained, “I was just hanging out, infatuated, looking at the older guys and seeing what they were doing and wanting to be part of it. And they’re welcoming you in because you’re young. And as you get older, it’s like if you really want to be in a gang. You got to do something now.”

The Death Row owner continued, “Now you’ve got to prove yourself. It’s not a game no more … not a joke no more. It’s not just ‘we’re hanging out.’ Nah, we need to do something now. And now it becomes ‘are you going to be that scary guy or are you you going to be that down guy?’ If you’re a part of a gang, you really don’t want to be that scary guy.” The rapper revealed that the brotherhood and movie-like action drew him in but explained how his sentiments quickly changed when he experienced the violence first-hand.

Speaking on his wariness and apprehension regarding the toxic culture, Snoop divulged, “I was always scared. That’s why I believe I survived because you have to either have fear or respect. And I didn’t understand respect. So I feared everything. So I was basically moving and grooving, trying to figure out what not to do. A lot of times, I got shot at. A lot of times, I had a gun in my possession and could have shot back. But I was too scared to shoot back because I was so concerned with my life. It’s either fight or flight. And most of the time when you’re out there, it’s flight.”

However, Snoop’s prudence and constant awareness allowed him to escape, and as he persevered making music on the side, he ended up finding refuge at Death Row and left the gang culture behind to obtain stardom. You can watch his Howard Stern interview in the video below.