The comparison has been made before and it has almost become a cliche--because it's the truth. And it bears repeating: While the debate over how to fight terrorism of the Islamist extremist type the world over is underway, Chicago has its own form of terrorism: Armed gangster punks fighting over drug turf and vengeance.
John Kass provided another important reminder today while writing about the courageous and admirable reaction to the killings of two men a week ago on the steps of the congregation's church. (Chicago murder on the steps of a church tests the faithful)
So this where Chicago is now: Murder on the steps of church.
Chicago is a war zone on the South and West sides, and Mayor Rahm Emanuel has no answers for the gangs that spread terror. The politicians would rather Chicago focus on some easy outrage, like a ginned up controversy over a monument to a dead Italian fascist.
I don't have the answers either. The non-political answers untainted by ideology.
Is it not worth the same effort as the war on terror that sometimes but not always takes as many lives as are daily snuffed out on the streets of Chicago? Is there a parallel response to the international battle against the local terrorism that preys on the lives of women and men, girls and boys? For one, the Chicago terrorism is "home grown," consequence of all that has led to this murderous climate--poverty, ignorance, guns, family breakdown, apathy, tolerance of borderline behavior and worse. Maybe the authorities ought to declare a "state of emergency" and a curfew. Of course, that wouldn't help because so many of the shootings happen during daylight.
Read the Kass column and share your ideas about what should or could be done.