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I’m weary of writing about young Black boys being gunned down by young Black men.

There’s a $20,000 reward for information leading to the killer of Tyshawn Lee, a nine-year-old boy who was shot multiple times Monday and died in a Chicago alley.

Nine years old. He was just a child.

So this is what’s come to: We need financial rewards to encourage our own people to help stop the killings of our own people. How do we change a Black gangster culture where Black lives don’t matter?

Where is the outrage? Where is the anger? Where is the indignation? Was Tyshawn caught in a crossfire? Did the killer shoot the boy intentionally?

We don’t know all the answers. We do know this: far too many young Black men –and children– are being gunned down on the streets of Chicago, and throughout this country, and it seems like our community is far too silent or far too numb.

“This was the execution of a baby,” Rev. Michael Pfleger, a Chicago minister, told CNN Monday. “When are we going to have the courage to eradicate this violence?”

Good question.

When a white police office shoots an unarmed Black man to death, Black folks will march in the streets for weeks, and I’ll write columns for several days running, but where are the marches for Tyshawn Lee? Where are the protestors?

Members of ‘Black Lives Matter’ disrupted Hillary Clinton’s rally in Atlanta last week and appeared outraged on CNN, but I didn’t see that same sense of collective outrage over Tyshawn’s shooting on Monday.

As a community, sometimes we have misplaced priorities. I have written numerous columns – too many to count – about racial profiling, excessive use of force by white police officers, and the ongoing injustice – and murders – of unarmed Black men at the hands of white cops.

But today, young Black men are killing each other at an alarming rate – and our children are being gunned down in the prime of their lives and yet it’s as if this is our new normal.

As of Tuesday, 2,578 people had been shot since January 1, 2015, according to The Chicago Tribune. That’s compared to 2,587 who were shot between January 1 and December 31, 2014. September was the deadliest month since 2002 for gun violence, the newspaper reported, when Chicago recorded 60 homicides that month.

That’s worth getting angry about.

Police say they don’t know if Tyshawn was in the wrong place at the wrong time or if he was the intended target. Witnesses said an argument broke out and Tyshawn was shot several times.

Karla Lee, the boy’s mother, asked anyone with any information about the shooting to speak with police.

“Please put the guns down, please,” Lee said through tears. “I’m only 26. This is my only baby.”

Chicago police detective Dean Andrews told reporters, “We will be working around the clock to find out more.”

Here’s the sad irony of Tyshawn’s death: The shooting happened on the same day that Hillary Clinton, the Democratic candidate for president, met with the mothers of Michael Brown, Tamir Rice and Trayvon Martin who were killed by gunfire.

Tyshawn’s family said he loved to play basketball and video games. He should be shooting hoops today.

“This heartless person must be captured,” Pfleger said.

And we – as a community – must insist on it.

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19 thoughts on “Black Lives Matter In The Streets Of Chicago, Too…Or Do They?

  1. Andre Lee on said:

    When you use the caption “Black Lives Matter” you are painting with a broad brush. It shouldn’t matter if its at the hand of a police or the hands of a friend foe or enemy. The inclusion is too many blacks are getting kill, period. Why is it more of an outrage when a black gets kill versus a child is murdered. Is the life of the child less valuable because he or she wasn’t kill by a cop?

    In every aspect a life still matter whether its black or white, yellow or brown. Here you are with this add on comment its a Anti-Police Brutality movement, well I am pretty sure that’s a new one there who knew. Now we all know it only concern cops killing blacks, Wow. Guess that’s why I don’t see no black leaders all gathering together in Chicago like they do everywhere else when there a killing by a cop. And Mother Against Drunk Driving does exactly what it says, they deal with DRUNK drivers, not arm robberies and burglaries. But to say Black Lives Matter only refer to cop killing leave us to believe and you to say anything else doesn’t MATTER.

  2. I say this to myself everyday DOES BLACK LIVES MATTER when blacks are killing each other. Truth! white people really don’t care about our lives because we as black people don’t care about our lives either. We’re not fooling no one but ourselves

  3. Just another example of #BlackLivesMatter – until Blacks stop killing Blacks I do not want to hear of another protest when a white Police officer kills a Black; at least when the white Police officer does the killing we know who he/she is; when Blacks kill Blacks NOBODY knows anything!! But I bet the girlfriend, mother or wife of that gang member knows who killed this child, why won’t SHE speak up???

  4. Its sad and it just doesn’t stop. When you say something about blacks killing blacks some people get upset and act as if you’re not supposed to say anything. I don’t get it. Its a serious problem and if we scream black lives matter we have to back that up in our own community and relations with each other. Stop the killing.

  5. Khaleelah on said:

    Who said anything about a black person killing this child. How do we know it was black on black crime? Yes we kill each other which we have been conditioned to do. Let’s talk about the psychological effects of slavery and why we have not received counseling for hundreds of years of being taught to hate and despise ourselves and love our oppressors. Get off your damn high horses of condemnation and address how we can solve the real issues of self hatred and then we will stop killing each other. Until then you are part of the problem. You are in the matrix — which reality will you decide on — truth or falsehood.

  6. Claude on said:

    This blog is a sham. It’s a lyrical minstrel show complete with exaggerated performances and outlandish premises. White on white crime dwarfs black on black crime by sheer numbers in this country, but you never hear anyone acknowledge that. Whites are not marginalized, maligned, or pre-defined for the worse in America. This article shucks and jives to the myth that violent crime is perpetuated only by, and against, black people. You are re-victimizing Tyshawn Lee and his family by using them for your agenda.

    Rewards to solve crimes is not a new concept. Violent crime in Chicago is not a new concept. If Tyshawn were still alive today those facts would still stand. I know I don’t have to say this for you because I imagine blackamericaweb doesn’t let complete ignoramuses write blogs, but I am laying it out for anyone that might have had the wool pulled over their eyes when it came to your true target: Black Lives Matter.

    Black Lives Matter is an ANTI-POLICE BRUTALITY movement; you do not go to a group pushing for police reform and attack them for not picketing gang violence. When Zachary Hammond, a white teen, was murdered by the police, Black Lives Matter raised questions when no one else did, because it’s always been about holding police accountable for their actions. That’s their focus. That’s their forte. Police brutality is a government-sanctioned pastime. Cops are protected by unions, courts and other cops. BLM is protesting the institution. Gang violence is not an institution, there are no unions protecting thugs, there’s no media smear campaign against the victims. Who are they supposed to be protesting? It’s interesting that you never say. The fear of retaliation and the distrust of police is what creates the no-snitching culture that makes gang violence so hard to prevent. You didn’t acknowledge any of those factors. None of them are a big secret. I can only wonder why.

    No one is taking Mother’s Against Drunk Driving to task for not speaking out against violent crimes committed against transgender teens in New York. There are and have always been groups dedicated to fighting inner city crime and creating environments that keep children from becoming part of the problem. The Chicago Urban League would have been a real easy answer for you, if you actually cared about the subject, but by putting the onus on Black Lives Matter, an anti-police brutality movement that’s barely 2 years old, you’ve effectively erased every person that has worked against violent crime. Those of us you haven’t erased, you’ve already decided we’re not upset or doing anything about this. The first step towards marginalizing a group of people is by dehumanizing them, and by dictating that we aren’t mad, aren’t allowed to get mad, but absolutely should be mad, you’ve taken away our basic human emotions while also prejudging us based on your own absurd biases. You don’t get to talk about how we should be upset about black on black crime. You already made it a point to silence us when you wrote this blog. Looks like you’re the one with your priorities out of whack.

    Gang violence isn’t just a black issue, but we’ve somehow bought into the idea that this is a problem only we can solve. America, with its infinite resources, is apparently let off the hook for the environment it created in the first place. I anticipate your follow up blog where you take America – all of it- to task for facilitating this mess we were all born into.

    • Timothy Green on said:

      Claude as a black man i unfortunately have to point out the point that you yourself are telling lies, for the amount of the population that us blacks represent we are SLAUGHTERING OURSELVES OFF at an exponential rate, don’t shuck & jive into the fuckery denial of “everyone else is bad too, so we shouldn’t look within ourselves to solve our problems lets point fingers elsewhere” .. your welcome to pull up the FBI databases & every other resource & see that WE HAVE PROBLEMS WITHIN OUR COMMUNITIES THAT WE NEED TO ADDRESS, that are far more detrimental to our futures than, our youths futures, & our culture .. so stick your head in the sand all you want, pretend & point the blame everywhere else, cause cause black lives matter… sometimes .. right my N!GG@??

      • There is no problem dealing with black on black crime in the community that I need to address. That’s a typical ploy to try and make someone’s bad decision my problem. I’m neither a social worker nor a minister. The ‘community’ is not my problem.

      • The only problem in our community are clowns like you putting on the make up and dancing to massa’s tune waving FBI statistics around while trying to deflect from every issue with “we is our own worst enemy!”

        Black women are being inflicted with AIDS at a startling rate, how can we- “But what about black on black crime!”

        The police are murdering unarmed black men on camera, we need to- “WE HAVE PROBLEMS IN OUR COMMUNITY, WE CAN ONLY TALK ABOUT THAT”

        The education system is failing us, our schools are literally falling apa- “WE IS OUR OWN WORST ENEMY!”

        The reason the violent crime persists is because gullible fools like yourself keep pointing in the dark to the nebulous black boogeyman, brandishing empty talk about “the community” – not actual leaders or people in positions of power to deal with this, just random people in “the community” that need to rise up and say “killing is bad, mmkay” and then all crime will cease and mark the beginning of an era of peace and harmony. We will never solve problems because of cowards like you pointing at everyone else instead of the real issue. We do not live in a vaccuum. Gun violence is a problem created by America. Poor education is a problem created by America. No Snitching culture was created by America. These violent neighborhoods were created by America. A police force no one can trust was created by America. There are a ton of factors that create and maintain our environment. Those factors did not come from a vaccuum, and a solution sure as hell won’t either.

  7. October on said:

    I talk to many young people about this issue. They stated if someone disrespects them and they walk away, they are considered a punk. But I say, do you realize there are many, many brave individuals in the ground and you’re doing the work of the Klan killing your own. They stare into space with no answer. They don’t trust the police or any authority figure for that matter. So, what do we do? Do BLM?

  8. specialt757 on said:

    The people who sit back at watch crimes being committed and say nothing are just as bad as the criminal themselves. Someone knows who committed this murder along with countless others that have gone unsolved.
    This is an OUTRAGE without a doubt, without the help of the community, these type murders will continue to go unsolved. Don’t blame others, look inside the community. Put a stop to it, TURN THEM IN!

  9. Khmboo on said:

    You need to wake up young generation, your going to be extinct in 25 years, and I will be telling my biracial child, what you are when we go visit your likeness in a museum. Ya see my brotha’s, that’s where your going to end up…prison, 6 feet under, museum. Those are your only choices. And now our choices, is to procreate with someone that doesn’t look like you, or represent you, cause once again….your not around.

  10. Timothy Green on said:

    Its not trendy to be outraged bout the black on black slaughter, the amount of our own people that are murdering our own people is INSANELY alarming, & when you look into the reasons why it just becomes disgusting, gang violence, childish arguments, disrespects & slights make our people feel like killing another person is a more logical reaction than just going home, & the witnesses to these atrocities have this brainwashed idiotic mindset that they should “mind my own business & not say nothing to nobody” … until we fix the issue of showing so lil value & regard for our own lives (we should be up in arms WHENEVER someone is killed by senseless violence not just by the police) the BLM will make minimal gains at best & our communities will continue to witness the daily massacre of our own by our own

    • I remember when the Michael Brown incident came about and then a few days later, a nine year old boy was execuited and you didn’t hear a bleep. The only reason why I even heard about it was because I went to a friend of mine’s FB page and she said, “Where’s the Outrage?” Wasn’t there.

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