Chicago has a race problem. You won’t see that in a “Visit Chicago” ad, nor will you hear about it from a realtor. The Illinois Film Office probably didn’t warn you about it before you took the job on “Empire”. It’s our city’s dirty little secret.
Decades before Laquan McDonald, we saw the brutal beating of Lenard Clark in 1997. At the time, he was a black teenager beaten into a coma by three white racists in the city’s Bridgeport neighborhood. Fortunately, he survived but continues to struggle because of the incident. (Only one of the three guys was given prison time; the other two received probation.)
In 1999, Ricky Byrdsong, a former Northwestern University basketball coach, was jogging with his kids when a white supremacist shot him to death. Two days later, the shooter committed suicide.
There are many other stories that don’t make the news, but just about every story ends with disappointment. Hopefully, you can be the first to get justice and use your platform to make things better for the rest of us.
I believe that Chicago’s good outweighs the bad. For every racist white person I’ve met in this city, I’ve met many others who were not. You don’t need to watch TV and movies to know that humanity can be united during difficult moments. You can create change with your influence and your platform. Maybe we need to show examples of peace and unity going on at 2 A.M. in Chicago. I wouldn’t mind meeting up to create ways to reduce hate crimes across this country. Don’t let this incident overshadow the good things that have happened while you’ve worked here. Turn this negative into a positive and show those who LOVE Trump’s HATE that love TRUMPS hate.