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You can't blame the church

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I read most of your article on "Gangs of Zion" in the Logan Herald Journal and was very disappointed by the lack of research that went into it. Granted, you did do some historical research on the history of Polynesians and their migration to Utah, but you would think you would have taken the time to investigate why youth, and in particular Polynesian youth, join gangs. Instead, you went ahead in a cowardly way to blame the LDS Church for the problems of Polynesian youth.

You wrote about Miles Kinikini, who first joined a gang when he was in third grade to protect himself from Hispanic gangs. In his situation, I would probably have joined a gang, too. I guess that’s the LDS Church’s fault, or maybe the Catholic Church is at fault because they did not do enough to stop the Hispanic kids from joining gangs?

I grew up in Salt Lake City on the west side, where I attended West High School. I had many friends who came from different ethnic backgrounds, and some were in gangs. Never once did I hear that the reason they joined a gang was because the church they belonged to did not do enough.

Matthew Adams
Logan, Utah

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