In just about each local newscast there’s a report about gun violence and its victims. And the headlines the next morning with a total of those shot and the fatalities the previous day gives me a headache.
What the hell is going on?
I’ve been in Chicago since birth and this is the first time in about 20 years I’m actually scared to walk down the street.
Chicago’s murder rate was at its highest in the 90s. I remember it distinctly. I was ending
my high school years and I recall there were some that weren’t heading off to college as my friends and I were.
Fast forward to last year. The murders weren’t as high as during my high school days but the headlines each day, especially during the warmer months, sure made it seem that way.
Still, I wasn’t scared to be outside or be in the field as I’m required as a journalist.
This year, I’m shaking in my boots. If I don’t have to be outside, I’m not. If I have to walk a little ways after I exit my vehicle, I walk fast. I report the news. I’m not trying to be the news.
Our crime unfortunately garners national attention. Everyone’s constantly talking about it.
There’s no escaping what’s been happening.
Yet, there appeared to be no outrage coming from the White House.
Did I miss it?
When news of the Colorado theater shooting occurred, my prayers went out to the families.
Then came the outrage and calls for ways to keep our communities safe.
President Barack Obama said last month during an appearance at the National Urban League conference, “We should leave no stone unturned and recognize that we have no greater mission that keeping our young people safe.”
Ok, I agree.
I, we, needed to hear that months ago when headlines of how many were shot and killed rolled off the printing presses each night.
Why does it take a massacre elsewhere to get a little mention of what’s going on at home?
Yes, you’re the President of the United States, however, I need for you to comment about what’s going on in Chicago.
We need to hear that you are paying attention and you have a reaction.
Is that too much to ask?
Speak up and tell us how you really feel about what’s going on on the streets in your city.