Monday, August 3, 2009
Personal Aside: In One Weekend, More than a Dozen Shot in Chicago. Liberals, Churchmen, Editorial Boards in Denial.
The Baghdad-Like Casualties.
The weekend before last at CBS reported that at least 15 people were shot and wounded in one nightseven of them in a single incident on Chicagos West Side.
Police were called to the scene of a shooting at Walnu and Holman Blvd. at 10:43 p.m. on the night of July 29 where seven people were shot according to Fire Media Affairs Director Larry Langford. He said that six people were initially hospitalized in critical condition and one adult man was taken in stable condition after suffering a graze wound. In addition an individual was found shot inside a grocery store and the six others were found within a half-block radius of the store. The shooters were unknown and initially no one was in custody, police said.
An hour earlier, three peopleincluding a woman standing with her baby in a strollerwere shot within 20 minutes on the South and West Sides. In the South Shore neighborhood about 9:30 p.m., a 22-year-old man was shot in the hand and suffered a minor head wound at 7700 S. Avalon avenue. The shooting followed a carjacking more than two hours earlier in the 8800 block of South Parnell avenue when five suspects approached a victim and physically removed him from his car at gunpoint, said police News Affairs. The suspects put him in their car and took him to his residence where they stole his TV sets. After the robbery they drove him to the Avalon avenue address where they beat him and then shot him as he ran away. The man was taken to Stroger Hospital of Cook county in stable condition, Langford said.
Then at 9:31 p.m. near the intersection of King Drive and 64th street in the Woodlawn neighborhood, a 25-year-old woman was shot wile standing out side with her baby in a stroller talking to friends on the grounds of a gated housing development. Three males wearing black hoods burst out of a nearby Auto Zone store and opened fire, said the Grand Crossing police captain. The woman who was not the target of the shooting then felt a sharp pain in her lower right leg and discovered she was shot. The baby was unharmed and no one else was shot.
In a third shooting a 22-year-old man walked into Loretto Hospital with a gunshot wound to the ankle after being shot at 165 N. Laporte avenue in the Austin neighborhood at about 9:50 p.m., Langford said. Police News Officer Ron Gaines said the shooting possibly happened during a robbery and that the victim was in good condition.
Even then the violence wasnt over. At 11:02 p..m. two men were shot as they sat on a porch at 3037 S. Springfield in Little Village. They wwere shot by members of a rival gang who came by on foot, said police. One victim was shot in the chest and the other shot in the eye and both went to Mount Sinai hospital in stable condition according to Gaines. Not long afterward a man was hit by gunfire in the 4200 block of south Wells street when tso other males began shooting about 11:20 p.m. according to Police News Affairs. The victim was hit in the leg and taken in stable condition to Provident Hospital of Cook county.
Further south, a teenage boy was shot and wounded late Tuesday while walking in the 10700 block of South Champion avenue at about 11:20 p.m. The shooting was a drive-by and police are looking for a white GMC. The teen was hit in his right side and is in good condition at Advocate Christ Medical Center in Oak Lawn. In another incident a man was shot and critically wounded at 7211 S. Cornell avenue in the South Shore neighborhood, shot and wounded in the chest and upper shoulder at 1:19 a.m., police said. He was sitting in his car where investigators fond blood but he was found shot on the street about four doors down, said police. He was taken to Northwestern Memorial Hospital in critical condition.
The City. Churches and Medias State of Denial.
No one not the city nor the churches nor the media have the intestinal fortitude to point out the obvious: this carnage continues because there is no family stability not much marriage nor recognition of the need for two-family homes in the overwhelmingly black areaswith this chaotic non-family massive couplings going unrecognized by (a) the city, (b) the major churches which only preach the need for gun control and further anti-poverty city, state and federal programs and (c) by a compliant media which do not want to ruffle the disastrous statistics that has produced insouciant and rootless teenagers with no direction who form into gangs as a substitute for stable families.
The greatest lack comes from the churches. There should be a general city-wide drive from a ministerial coalition involving Catholic, Protestant and Jewish affiliations to teach the need for marriage and family stability. Instead the churches including my own Catholic one are turning tail and running, fearful that bad public relations will eventuate and that they may be caught preaching the gospel where they would prefer to be dishing out monetary goodies. The gutless editorial boards deserve to be second in line for condemnation. Cowardly columnists and pop liberals who control print space are next because they prattle only pleasantries and avoid bringing the minority community to grips with the truth. Politicians who are the bottom-feeders in every community, reacting what comes down from above and valueless in this kind of debate which requires courage and fearlessness. Mayor Daley, of course, is afraid of his shadow and talks in his kind of put-on neighborhood white-guy talk to the media.
But the finger of blame should go first to the churches who receive money for this purpose and are parsing-parsing-parsing their way through life trying to get good press with jellyfish spines.
How long will it go on before there is a public outrage directed against the churches principally my own which are sloughing off their duty to God and man? The principal showboat in this carnage is Fr. Michael Pfleger who as pastor of Saint Sabinas saw his own neighborhood shot up repeatedly. He posed dramatically, telling the assailants to come and get him if they wish but leave the poor alone. Ready for my closeup, C.B.!
If only things were that easy. Pfleger, of course, is not known for advising any of his flock to take on the arduous moral duties of family-building nor are any of the black heroic-couplet-wringing sing-song ministers who have one eye cocked for TV cameras.
This is What Should Happen.
If there is not now a viable Chicago Ministerial Society which I doubt one should be formed with the single issue of encouraging marriage, discouraging puppy-dog coupling and returning to the Judeo-Christian principles of morality. It should be composed of the Cardinal if you can get him to put down his formal regalia, roll up his sleeves and go to work and bishops and rabbis of key denominations. They should meet and take the message of return to marriage and stable family life to the churches substituting this message to the stentorian political ranting that has been going on for decades. Catholic Charities should abandon its p. r. and concentrate on hard-bitten teaching of morality to the poor. The media can scoff in order to salve itself and so should be ignored while the work goes on.
Will it? My guess is no. Its far easier to rail against the 2nd amendment and legally constituted gun shops than to assume responsibility which is theirs for an up-building of moral tone. Too easy to run to Washington to pass another stimulus than to preach. And you can forget about the editorial boards which are cowering under their desks afraid to offend.
But thats what SHOULD happen. Your thoughts please at firstname.lastname@example.org