The choice of making a difference

by christinem on August 31, 2013 - 6:52pm

Since the redaction of my super-post, I have been writing about violence and corruption caused by the Mafia and street gangs. In my previous posts, I have been elaborating about different strategies to end this violence such as spreading awareness about the dimension of this phenomenon to adults and children, Montreal Anti-Corruption Squad, finding the roots of organized crimes in the heart of our governments as well as investing more money into researches and investigations about this issue. Also, my organizational research focused on organizations that helped stopping violence in communities. According to an article written by Paul Cherry and published on The Gazette website on the 9th of April 2013, Jimmy Cournoyer, member of the West End Gang, was accused of importing tones of marijuana from Montreal and exporting it to the United States. In fact, Cournoyer is responsible of the spreading of at least 100, 000 pounds of “hydroponic marijuana” from Canada to New York, Brooklyn and Queens Island. By 2009, as stated in the summary of the case filed in court, “Cournoyer was sending at least 1,000 pounds of marijuana to New York per week, and was planning to expand his business to 5,000 pounds of marijuana per week”. Also, according to a second article written by CBC News and published on the CBC News website on the 17th of April 2013, Harry Mytil, member of one of Montreal street gangs, was shot in the garage of his residence at Laval. After receiving numerous calls from citizens who heard gunshots from their home, the police arrived and found Mytil dead inside his car. According to another article on this issue, published on The Gazette website and written by Paul Cherry on the 17th of April 2013, Mytil had participated, over the last decade, in a home invasion and had very strong ties with the reputated street gang known under the name of Bo-Gars. At the moment of his death, Mytil had a case pending for charges of irresponsible driving and not stopping at the scene of an accident. As stated in the same article, “Mytil's death comes eight months after Chenier (Big) Dupuy, a leader in the Bo-Gars, was killed in the parking lot of a shopping mall in Anjou.” These three articles reflect the fatal and long term consequences street gangs and Mafia’s corruption and violence can have on our society.

Alfred Lomas was once part of on e of the most dangerous street gangs in South Central Los Angeles. He committed numerous crimes against the law. He also worked as a body guard for influent leaders of gangs in Los Angeles. Lomas was an actor in a multitude of drug wars that involved diverse gangs and mostly lead to inhumane violence and numerous death.

However, Lomas started to gradually focus on his spirituality. He started to deepen his knowledge about god and decided that he was far away from the person he wanted to become. Therefore, he decided to change not only his life but also the lives of others. According to LA Gang Tours website, “he dedicated his life to serving the Los Angeles community through humanitarian aid and violence reduction/ prevention”. He began his life changing experience as director of the mobile food truck program at Los Angeles Dream Center which is a program that distributes food to low class families who cannot afford proper meals on a regular basis. He also risks his life daily by distributing food in Blood and Crisp territories that are considered as a major danger/ enemy to him.

Also, Alfred Lomas is currently working with multi agency collaborative to develop infallible gang intervention strategies. Moreover, he participated in the creation of many programs to help youth who are directly touched by the presence of street and who could most probably become future members.

Since the beginning of his involvement, according to the same website,

  • “Gang violence in Los Angeles reduced by 27% Since the violence interruption/conflict mediation model has been implemented.
  • This model of violence interruption is being studied worldwide for use in combating gang violence in other nations.”

This man had an amazing impact not only on his community but on the entire world. I doubt if I or anyone could have enough courage to do the same as him. Leaving a street gang is synonymous of exposing yourself to death every.  It takes even more courage and generosity to go out and help others not to do the same mistakes you did in the past and pay the price for. Direct actions like these can change the world. The organization at which I will volunteer is based on the same principle, where diverse people help youth in different communities to fight and resist violence. I believe that Alfred Lomas is such an amazing inspiration and model that is helping to make this world a better place.

Link to Cournoyer’s article:


Link to Mytil’s article:

Link to Mytil’s second article:


LA Gang Tours: