Recently, St. St. Columbanus Church, on the south side was the scene of a murder.
From the Chicago Tribune Report, a known gang banger, attending a funeral for another fallen brother in mayhem, destruction and death, was being given a good Christian send-off, and then it got ugly. Shots were fired, by a yet unknown fellow killer and the momentarily pious thug was plugged and died. Another person was seriously injured, and one can imagine that there are holes in the brickwork to repair.
A good business to be in, sadly, on the south side, is the funeral parlor business, so those of you who are unemployed, might want to give the career of death a shot (pun intended). There is a never ending stream of bodies to be patched back together and then shipped off for a six foot hole or for a change form to fit in a shiny urn.
This happens every day down here, and it's not really news, unless there is some oddity attached to it. This time it was that the deadly deed happened in a church. Otherwise, it's a story for 45 seconds on the evening news, reported on usually by the required minority reporter sent out to the minority hood. (Can you say "racist" stereotype by news media?) Another little girl who gets shot through her window or while on the porch, well, that's just too bad, too, but it merits maybe only 15 seconds for the talking heads.
What struck me is that even the required minority reporters could not correctly pronounce the name of St. Columbanus Church. It could just show the overall illiteracy of some of the media, but most likely it is a representation of Chicago's Mason-Dixon Line, which is Madison Avenue, in Chicago.
So many of the media live in toni, well-to-do areas, north of Madison Avenue, that to venture south is an extreme act of courage for most, even the assigned minorities, and they would never make the trip solo, just them and a notepad, so to speak. If the daily killings were happening where the media hang their bad hats (worn by the women reporters in winter), then the outcry would be unrelenting. Our chief cop import, McCarthy, would never get away with his brushing over of crime stats and sucking up to Lord Mayor Rahm's see-no-evil vision of Chicago.
There is a disturbing trend, though. The crime is going Willie Sutton. Willie is the bank robber, who, when asked why he robs banks, said to the (even then) stupid reporter, "That's where the money is." Duh! So crime is escalating north of Mason-Dixon-Madison Avenue. Witness the recent Marriott stabbing. And the flash mob shoplifting on Lord Mayor Rahm's Mag Mile.
Soon, with the increasing crime in those areas, the non-minority reporter -- the white one-- will have to be sent out to the corner of Oak and Michigan to get the low down.
The south side has always had a gang population. A guy by the name of Al Capone housed his mother there in a two flat, where old Al used to hang out on occasion, no doubt for some good Italian cooking.
My grandparents knew Mrs. Capone. They said she was a sweet old lady. My grandparents went to the same church as she did, St. Columbanus. Nobody shot nobody in a church back then, not the mob, nobody.
There should be mandatory tours of the south side by news anchors, white reporters and other north media pundits, who love to wax philosophically on what goes on down here, and offer their buffoon solutions, but would never, ever come unescorted.
Footnote: the only upside to the negative south side image was in 2005. The Sox were in the World Series, and my north side friends wanted to try to get tickets and see the games, and they would ask if it were safe around the Cell. Of course I said "no". Why should they get tickets? Wait for their Cubbies to come through in a century or two.