Chicago is a dangerous place. Anyone who cares to look at the statistics can see that as plain as day. The weekend death toll from Chicago dwarfs similar time frames during the height of the Iraq and Afghanistan Wars. There’s a reason many of us think of it as a warzone, but I’m inclined to think that such comparisons are unfair to warzones.
In a profoundly tragic irony, two of the latest victims were activists trying to work against the violence that plagues the streets of the Windy City.
Two mothers in Chicago have been killed in a drive-by shooting as they stood on a street corner in an effort to deter gun violence.
Chantell Grant and Andrea Stoudemire were volunteers for Mothers Against Senseless Killings and had been camped out at the corner to prevent conflict.
They were shot on Friday evening by the occupants of a blue SUV. No arrests have yet been made.
Supporters say they are shocked by the killing and will honour their memories.
“It is sacred ground, as far as we’re concerned,” said Mothers Against Senseless Killings (Mask) member Maria Pike, referring to the South Side Chicago street corner policed by the fallen mums.
“This was a haven that was built by moms,” she told ABC 7 in Chicago. “The lack of humanity is shocking,” she added.
Grant was a 26-year-old mother of four and Stoudemire was a 35-year-old mother of three.
The women were hit around 22:00 local time (03:00 GMT Saturday) while standing on West 75th Street and South Stewart Avenue in the city’s violence-plagued Englewood neighbourhood.
Not to be a callous jackwagon here, but standing on a street corner in a violent part of the city was probably not the safest way one could spend their time. I’m just sayin’.
I’m not blaming the women, though. I suspect they knew there were risks, though I also suspect they downplayed those risks in their minds. What they were doing probably took courage.
Frankly, this a tragedy. While I’m sure these women oppose pretty much everything I personally stand for, they were still people who were trying to clean up their crime-ridden community the best way they could think of. For them to be killed like this is just a damn shame.
However, there’s also a lesson here that the other MASK members should keep in mind. In particular, that the criminals don’t care about collateral damage. They don’t care about killing innocent people or hurting others. They’re callous, unfeeling sociopaths who feel completely justified in doing whatever they want. I promise you that their entire response to killing these women was a shrug and some comment about how they shouldn’t have been there if they didn’t want to get shot. Like it was the women’s fault or something.
That’s just how these gang-bangers are. They simply don’t care.
Let’s keep in mind, though, that Chicago is the legacy of Illinois and their decades of gun control efforts. Efforts that clearly haven’t worked. If they did, then maybe these two women would never have been on that street corner.
Hat tip: The Truth About Guns