We caught our share of flack while offering a rebuttal to Gawker’s Chief Keef proclamation and questioned whether the young artist’s lyrical content should be heralded as beacon for a city whose levels of violence, particularly among its youth, are constantly at drastic highs compared to the rest of the nation. If it didn’t make sense then, take a look at the city’s spree of violence from Memorial Day weekend which included 25 people shot over 24 hours, 40 shootings total and 10 dead all across a four-day weekend.
“The city has had more homicides and shootings so far in 2012 than during the same time last year, according to unofficial briefing summaries prepared by the Chicago Police Department…According to the summaries, there have been at least 200 homicides so far this year compared with 134 during the same period in 2011. That’s a 49.25 percent increase over last year.
“The 10 people killed over the long weekend outnumber the four reported slain during the 2011 holiday weekend, when severe storms hit the Chicago area and forced many people inside. Shootings are up nearly 14 percent over last year, according to the unofficial summaries. There have been 851 shootings so far in 2012 compared with 747 during the same period in 2011, the police data showed.” [Chicago Tribune]
The 17-year-old rapper or any other artist can’t be held responsible for the tension and predilection to violence found within the city’s borders as they’re merely a microcosm of the whole. Chicago’s a spot built off a tangled web composed of gangs, affiliations and extortion and we’re not talking merely rap, but much of the city as a whole. The place is a powder keg and anything deemed even slightly incendiary could cause an explosion. Look no further than the events from Friday through Monday to see the potential danger if the situation were amplified.