The pocket neighborhood on the Northwest side of Chicago where I grew up and forged bonds that I will have the rest of my life has defined me. Me and my counterparts affectionately refer to the neighborhood as the “Square” and it is where my heart and some of my greatest affinities lie.
The people that I came of age with, cried, laughed, got into and out of trouble with transcended the lines of mere friendship. This network of a couple hundred people are my family for all intensive purposes. I feel as if I have a gift that no one else is privy to as it is a connection that many people lack. I don’t know many people who still have a relationship with a wide swath of people from the neighborhood they grew up in.
The past 24 hours have been tortuous… My good friend, the term “brother from another mother” doesn’t do justice, has had to contend with the most horrible burden; burying his own child.
The violence in Chicago is a routine occurrence on the headlines, but until now… It was always about them, not me. This young man, who I’ve known since birth, who did all of the right things and fulfilled the aspirations of his family in going off to college… Ostensibly to impact the world, was cut down by people who did not value their own lives enough to respect another.
The “people” who did this are still on the loose and I wonder if they feel, anything?
I’m inclined to say that they are not worthy of life… I want justice and it isn’t in courtroom.
My eyes are the color of the rage that is seething inside of me, red. My eyes are swollen, my lungs raw from heaving, the tears streaming down my face burn like gasoline. I can’t make sense of what has happened other than my faith in humanity is lost.
There has been something taken from me that I can’t get back and it has been replaced with a raw seething hatred.