MARK ALLEN TALKS -- The record number of 8 dead and over 50 shot this past weekend and how veteran activists Mark Allen and Wallace "Gator" Bradley are challenging Chicago Police Chief Jody Weis with his statement that a majorioty these shootings were "gang related."
Chicago Police Chief Jody Weis must be challenged to give the public a better explanation of his attributing a majority of Chicago's record number of shooting to something other than the blanket term "gang-related," without giving details of what specific gangs he is talking about. Just this past week there were a few hundred known gang members and other at-risk youth and adults who joined in the Friday night peace march led by Father Michael Pfleger and approached Wallace "Gator" Bradley about passing out the peace message sent to the streets by Malik Jeff Fort and Larry Hoover.
With the success that the message that has been having among a number of street members that its unfair to Chief Weis to just throw out this broad term of "gang-related," without specifying what gangs are at the root of this most recent record number of 8 deaths and almost 50 shootings, especially for those who are working hard to bring peace at the street level, and the police may have some intelligence that many of us may not, but this blanket "gang-related" term is not a fair assessment to give the public without details. And this "gang-related" term is unfairly used to cover up just how many instances of senseless violence happens that has nothing to do with established gang relations, but a convenient term to use that satisfies the public.
As many of us at the grassroots level has repeatedly reported, that the tesnsions created in poor families and in the urban communities is so desperate that it cannot be resolves with simple words of "stop the violence," and that many good people have had their desperate economic conditions draw them into violent acts, well beyond the scope of established gang tensions. And we will never get to the core of the desperate acts of violence if Chief Weis doesnt listen to those of us in the streets regarding the fact that the majority of these tensions are not "gang related," and needs different types of intervention thats different from the intervention efforts directed at established gang organizations.
With each day, the streets of Chicago and the poor families of Chicago face an even grester sense of tensions and potential acts of violence stemming from the State of Emergency and desperate economic conditions facing urban communities and even Father Pfleger and 2,000 marchers on Friday proclaimed, a crowd which included Chief Weis and Mayor Daley. But do they listen to what the people are saying?