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Do any lives matter? Dwyane Wade's cousin one of at least 487 homicides in Chicago this year

We’re certainly not suggesting that the shooting death of Dwyane Wade’s cousin, Nykea Aldridge — who was shot and killed in front of a school in Chicago while pushing a baby carriage — is anything but a tragedy.


However, the massive media attention that her death has commanded threatens to overshadow another important story: this August is shaping up to be the most violent month in Chicago in decades, with more than 400 people shot. The Chicago Tribune reports that 11 people were shot in the space of just 12 hours on Monday alone.

With two days left to go in the month, the Tribune has tallied the numbers that have made August 2016 the most deadly month in the city since October 1997:

Chicago has recorded 487 homicides and more than 2,800 people shot so far this year, compared to 491 homicides and 2,988 people shot all of last year, according to Tribune data.

Chicago has a lower homicide rate than many other U.S. cities that are smaller in population. But this year, the city has recorded more homicides and shooting victims than New York City and Los Angeles combined, even though the two cities are larger than Chicago’s population of roughly 2.6 million.

On one hand, President Obama has been freeing up prison cells by commuting the “unduly harsh” sentences of hundreds of (mostly) non-violent drug traffickers, many of whom were in illegal possession of a firearm but didn’t actually use it while conducting business. On the other are cops like Superintendent Eddie Johnson, who would like legislation passed that would require harsher sentences for criminals arrested repeatedly for carrying illegal guns.


The Tribune reports that Johnson recently met with police chiefs from across the country and noted that more than 40 U.S. cities “experienced spikes in violence last year after years of decreases in the number of killings.” Looks like that catered sit-in and gospel sing-along on the House floor by anti-gun Democrats didn’t quite do the job.

In the meantime, police-involved shootings in Chicago have been on a steady decline over the past five years.

Colin Kaepernick was right about one thing: there are bodies in the street — lots of them. He refused to stand for the national anthem because, he said, “it would be selfish on my part to look the other way.” So why do so many choose to look the other way (or the wrong way) when Chicago’s ridiculous level of violence reaches record levels?


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