With Chicago's antiloitering law struck down, California is a model for how to fight street gangs

The image was riveting, as justice John Paul Stevens, a Chicago native, presented it. A gang member and his father are hanging out near Wrigley Field. Are they there "to rob an unsuspecting fan or just to get a glimpse of Sammy Sosa leaving the ball park?" A police officer has no idea, but under Chicago's anti-gang law, the cop must order them to disperse. With Stevens writing for a 6-to-3 majority, the Supreme Court last week struck down Chicago's sweeping statute, which had sparked 42,000 arrests in its three years of enforcement.

The decision was a blow to advocates of get-tough crime policies. But in a widely noted concurring opinion, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor suggested that a less draconian approach--distinguishing gang members from innocent bystanders--might pass constitutional muster. New language could target loiterers "with no apparent purpose other than to establish control over identifiable areas, to intimidate others from entering those areas or to conceal illegal activities," she wrote. Chicago officials vowed to draft a new measure. "We will go back and correct it and then move forward," said Mayor Richard Daley.

Chicago officials, along with the League of Cities and 31 states that sided with them in court, might do well to look at one state where anti-gang loitering prosecutions have withstood constitutional challenges: California. The state has two antiloitering statutes on the books, aimed at people intending to commit specific crimes--prostitution and drug dealing. In addition, a number of local prosecutors are waging war against gangs by an innovative use of the public-nuisance laws.

In cities such as Los Angeles and San Jose, prosecutors have sought injunctions against groups of people suspected of gang activity. "The officers in the streets know the gang members and gather physical evidence for lengthy court hearings," says Los Angeles prosecutor Martin Vranicar. If the evidence is enough to convince a judge, an injunction is issued to prohibit specific behavior--such as carrying cell phones or pagers or blocking sidewalk passage--in defined geographical areas. "It works instantly," says San Jose city attorney Joan Gallo, who successfully defended the tactic before the California Supreme Court. "A few days after the injunctions, children are playing on streets where they never were before."

So far, only a few hundred gang members have been targeted, out of an estimated 150,000 in Los Angeles alone. But experts say last week's decision set the parameters for sharper measures. Says Harvard law professor Laurence Tribe: "It just means they have to use a scalpel rather than an invisible mallet."

注(1):本文选自By Margot Hornblower/Los Angeles With reporting by Timothy Roche/Chicago and Andrea Sachs/New York Time; 06/21/99, Vol. 153 Issue 24, p55, 2/3p, 1bw
注(2):本文习题命题模仿对象2004年真题Text 2。

1. What does the author intend to illustrate with the example of the gang member and his father?
[A]How the antiloitering law works.
[B]How to maintain charming image.
[C]How tough the crime polices were.
[D]Why Chicago’s sweeping statute stroke down.

2. What can we infer from the first two paragraphs?
[A]Chicago’s antiloitering law shouldn’t be struck down.
[B]The cop was entitled to send the gangs away.
[C]Chicago officials yielded to the result of striking down the law.
[D]antiloitering law in Chicago was much too severe for the majority.

3. The third and fourth paragraphs suggest that ________.
[A]the League of Cities and 31 states should work with Chicago officials
[B]the injunctions in some cities brought back the safety on the street
[C]California successfully starts the battle against the gangs
[D]the police officers shoulder more responsibility than before

4. What does the author mean by “It just means they have to use a scalpel rather than an invisible mallet” (The Last Line, Paragraph 5)?
[A]The gang members should be given a get-tough attitude in the long run.
[B]The targeted gang members rather than all of them should be given a get-tough treatment.
[C] A scalpel can cut off the tumors of the society while the invisible mallet fails to.
[D]A scalpel is more powerful than the invisible mallet.

5. Which of the following is true according to the text?
[A]Chicago’s sweeping statute was struck down for its involving too many arrests.
[B]Chicago officials still maintained their get-tough crime policies.
[C]It was not safe for children to play on the street.
[D]California used a scalpel while other states used an invisible mallet to cope with the gangs.

答案:ADCBD

篇章剖析

本文采用提出问题——解决问题的模式。第一段和第二段提出芝加哥因为种种原因解除了禁止闲荡法令;第三段、四段和五段针对这一问题,指出加利福尼亚的做法是非常值得借鉴的。

词汇注释

loiter v.闲荡,虚度,徘徊
rivet v. 吸引(注意力)
disperse v.(使)分散,(使)散开,疏散
statute n.法令,条例
enforcement n.执行,强制
concur v.同时发生
draconian adj.严酷的,极其残酷的;十分严厉的:
intimidate v. 恐吓使胆怯;使害怕
innovative adj.创新的,革新(主义)的
injunction n.命令,指令,[律]禁令
parameter n.参数,参量,<口>起限定作用的因素
scalpel n.解剖刀
mallet n.槌棒

难句突破

1.Chicago officials, along with the League of Cities and 31 states that sided with them in court, might do well to look at one state where anti-gang loitering prosecutions have withstood constitutional challenges: California.
主体结构:Chicago officials might do well to look at …
结构分析:“along with the League of Cities and 31 states”在句子中做伴随状语,其中that又引导定语从句进行修饰;主句中where又引导从句来修饰state。
句子翻译:在加利福尼亚州,宪法已接受了有关反帮派闲荡的起诉。芝加哥官员和那些在法庭上支持他们的城市联盟和31个州政府,最好还是考虑这个州的做法为好。

题目分析

1.答案为A,属推理判断题。文中对应信息“but under Chicago's anti-gang law, the cop must order them to disperse”,从第一段我们可以看出作者在介绍芝加哥的“禁止闲荡法令”是如何运做及被解除的。

2.答案为D,属推理判断题。第一段和第二段主要介绍芝加哥解除了“禁止闲荡法令”。从第一段“which had sparked 42,000 arrests in its three years of enforcement”,我们可以看出这一法令是非常严厉的;从第二段“But in a widely noted concurring opinion, Justice Sandra Day O'Connor suggested that a less draconian approach--distinguishing gang members from innocent bystanders--might pass constitutional muster.”我们可以看出一项较宽松的法令即将出台。从这些地方我们可做出判断。

3.答案为C,属推理判断题。第三段和第四段主要介绍了加利福尼亚州是如何与街头帮派行为做斗争的。

4.答案为B,属推理判断题。这篇文章中存在对比:芝加哥的肃清法令“sparked 42,000 arrests in its three years of enforcement”,重在大范围的打击;加利福尼亚州“So far, only a few hundred gang members have been targeted, out of an estimated 150,000 in Los Angeles alone.”重在小范围的清除。

5.答案为D,属推理判断题。分析同第四题。

参考译文

停止纠结

随着芝加哥禁止闲荡法令的解除,加利福尼亚成为与街头帮派斗争的典范

正如芝加哥当地法官约翰•保罗•斯蒂文斯所描述的那样,这种形象是非常吸引人的。一个帮派成员和他的父亲在Wrigley Field附近闲荡,他们在那是想抢劫一个铁杆球迷呢还是只为了看一眼Sammy Sosa离开球场呢?警官无从知晓,但是根据芝加哥反帮派法,警察必须让他们散开。根据斯蒂文斯所写的六比三的多数优势,最高法院上个星期废除了芝加哥的肃清法令。这项法令在实行了三年的时间里,由之引发的逮捕达42,000起。

这一决定对于那些主张严厉惩治犯罪的人来说,无疑是一重创。但是考虑到大家普遍的想法,法官Sandra Day O'Connor表示,在区分帮派成员和无辜的旁观者方面,宪法可能会通过一项较宽松的议案。她这样写道,“闲荡者”可被重新定义为“除了要确实去控制一些地方,恐吓他人休得进入,隐瞒非法行径之外,没有其它明确的目的”。芝加哥官员发誓要起草一项新法案。Richard Daley市长说:“我们将回头予以更正,然后更好地前进。”

在加利福尼亚州,宪法已接受了有关反帮派闲荡的起诉。芝加哥官员和那些在法庭上支持他们的城市联盟和31个州政府,最好还是考虑这个州的做法为好。这个州有关禁止闲荡方面有两条明文规定,规定主要针对那些图谋卖淫和贩毒的人。而且,很多当地的公诉人率先使用妨害公众安宁法,正在发动一场反对帮派的战争。

在洛杉矶和圣何塞这样的城市,公诉人已申请禁止令,制约那些被怀疑有帮派行为的帮派团体。洛杉矶的公诉人Martin Vranicar说:“大街上巡逻的警察熟悉帮派成员,并为漫长的法庭审讯收集实物证据。”如果证据足够充分能使法官信服,就会颁布禁止令,在特定区域里禁止某些特定行为——比如携带手机或寻呼机或阻碍行人通道。圣何塞市律师Joan Gallo在加利福尼亚最高法庭上成功地进行了辩护,他说:“这马上就奏效了。禁止令颁发几天之后,孩子们就开始在他们以前从都不去的大街上玩耍了。”

据估计,洛杉矶150,000个帮派成员中,至今只有几百个被定位为目标对象。但是专家们表示,上周的决定为实施更为严厉的措施提供了参数。哈福法律教授Laurence Tribe说:“这也就意味着他们不用无形锤,而用手术刀来解决这一问题了。”                

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