36 Children Murdered in Chicago in 2008-2009 Academic Year

Stop. Killing. People - From CeaseFire - The Campaign to STOP the ShootingThank you to Bob Herbert for appropriately juxatoposing coverage of the murder of Johanna Justin-Jinich (Wesleyan ’10) with the all-but ignored thirty-six children who have been murdered in Chicago since January 1. His column from May 12 is worth reading.

A description of the facts from Herbert’s colum: “Some three dozen public school students have been murdered since the school year began, most of them shot to death. These children and teenagers have been killed in a wide variety of settings and situations — while riding a city bus, playing in parks, sitting in the back seats of cars, in gang disputes, in robberies, in the crossfire of sidewalk shootouts.”

The best line:

It’s a searing double-standard that tells us volumes about the ways in which we view one another, and whose lives are considered to have value in this society and whose are not. Another disturbing aspect of the coverage is the extreme prurient interest that drives it. The press goes wild over stories about murderous attacks on women who are young, attractive and white.

As Herbert mentions, CNN is one of the few news outlets to cover the story. Here is a link to their main story and a link to their blog coverage on  Anderson Cooper 360.

As a Wesleyan alum, I was particularly shocked by Johanna’s murder. I knew the bookstore and cafe where she was shot. I lived in the Jewish house on campus two out of my four years there. (The Jewish community was feared to be targeted by her killer.)

All that said, what is happening in Chicago – and what is not happening in the media – is appalling. 

Here are a few links that are worth checking out:  CeaseFire – The Campaign to STOP the Shooting, Kids Off the Block and Chicago Youth Voices on Violence.

If I could find a list of the victims – and if it hasn’t been done yet – I’d put a Custom Google Map together with information on the victims, pictures, etc.

 There is a good map, however, that CBS2 news put together for last summer’s shootings.


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