Shootings and homicides are on the rise in Chicago. It appears that all strategies to reduce them have failed, which left a significant impact from January 1, 2016 to April 28, 2016. There are many stories of shootings and killings every weekend. The Westside and Southside of Chicago continue to struggle with the senseless acts of violence being carried out against innocent bystanders. There is no rhyme or reason in regards to motives.
There was a time when the majority of violence was gang related, but now you have cliques and more interpersonal violence taking place amongst the high risk youth. Women and kids being targeted is nothing new in Chicago, but it makes one wonder what is really going on with the youth today? Nine year old TyShawn Lee was actually targeted by some young men because his father was allegedly involved in the death of someone's brother. Next you have the recent case of Little Khloe, a one year old shot in the back of her head in the Austin community while sitting in the back of a car.
The police can only do so much as it relates to stopping the violence on the front end. Community leaders must become more diligent in their efforts to reach out to the disenfranchised youth and bring them to the table of peace. It does not matter how you organize or strategize because it's hard to detect what's about to happen on any given day in Chicago.
The time has come to implement new strategies that include hiring young men from crime ridden communities and training them on how to become peacemakers for their peers. This is the only way you can get close enough to the element in order to have a direct impact. Many people talk about stopping the killings, but how can you stop a killing that you don't know is about to occur? If you have the right people on the ground networking with the potential shooters in the area, then you might get lucky enough to prevent some of the violence before it happens. Another area of concern would be the lack of resources for young men and women in some of the more distressed communities in Chicago.
Many cultures throughout American History struggled in the urban ghettos with high crime rates, however, the majority of Irish, Italian, and Jewish Gangsters abandoned the life of crime on the streets to become businessmen. This is a model that young men should really take a serious look at because the killings ceased as the old school gangsters began the process of working for the advancement of their people. The killings in Chicago will continue until people unify around this issue and help the young people identify another way to survive without taking the life of another person. Peace should be considered the norm instead of conflict.