root causes of violence
addressing YOUTH violence
as adult violence
Chicago's violence today is primary juvenile and youth violence, not adult violence, as confirmed by arrest records and recent "teen takeovers" and flash mobs of young, non-white economically disadvantaged youth disrupting central business and tourist areas of the city.
The roots of Chicago's youth violence are in the rise of the city's heavily armed, drug dealing, youth victimizing street gangs in the 1960's.
These gangs, with their estimated 100,000 members, have completely overwhelmed the capacity of law enforcement to maintain public safety. Gangs now view with each other to operate in or control huge areas of the city.
For decades, Chicago's mayors and police chiefs have virtually begged for the public to support law enforcement, saying "We can't do it alone." Today, Mayor Johnson insists that his "comprehensive" public safety plan will "involve everyone."
Over 20 years ago, in 1992, Mayor Richard M. Daley told 50 YMCA Youth Aldeman that "Chicago has lost two generation of young people to gangs and drugs."
Street gangs arose with the generation gap - the break-down of communication between young people and adults - that erupted worldwide in the 1960's.
polarization in media
Decades of alarmist, if-it-bleeds-it-leads crime story coverage of Chicago's gang/drug/youth/gun violence has estranged and polarized young people and adults in Chicago.
In the absence of trustworthy media forums committed to empowering Chicagoans of all ages and backgrounds to resolve violence, this coverage fuels the fear, mistrust and frustration that pervade Chicago today.
It leaves Chicagoans largely voiceless in resolving the violence that threatens their lives and livelihood.
And in a tragic irony, it leaves Chicago helpless to advance the ONE GOAL - Citywide Safety - that in reality unifies all 2.6 million Chicagoans.