June 27, 2006

Dead Over $50 Dollars

Just now, I was complaining to myself that there was no variety in Chicagoís Hyde Park neighborhood. You either have franchise restaurants or hole-in-the-wall joints that are interesting when they open, but become bland after a time and attract fewer customers as a result. I am not the only one who voices this issue with this community. However, Iím not sure if itís worth speaking on anymore.

Over the weekend, a woman who managed a KFC on South Chicago was killed during a robbery. You hear about these things so much in the Chi, but some of them strike people as bizarre. For me the part that was bothersome was the amount the robber got away with -- $50 dollars.

I imagine it had occurred to the guy who robbed the store that the amount of money taken wouldnít have been much. Even if he didnít get a lot, he could have simply left the store and came out with no bodies and tried again somewhere else. Being as impatient as he was during the whole ordeal, I suppose shooting her was a way of making her pay for being late with the money. No matter which way you cut the mustard on this, the whole thing is stupid.

Being current unemployed at the moment, I contemplated working at a restraint or a retail store. The current economy, as well as these news reports of crime in this city, has made me think twice about going in that direction. Iíd rather be broke and alive, than with a pocket full of money and dead.

I really feel sorry for the family that lost someone who was trying to earn a living, especially if the family she comes from is black. Being African-American myself, it grates on the nerves to constantly see ourselves showcased as dead or engaging a life of crime on the 7 OíClock evening news. There are many fingers and situations you can point to as the source of such robberies, but there are never are real solutions given. On the corporate end for KFC, they opted to close the store due to the incident Ė possibly even for good.

Iíd hate for places to start closing for fear of being robbed or losing employees to murder. On the south side, especially in Hyde Park, places to go to for a simple meal are grow smaller and smaller as the robberies that push them out grow bigger and bigger. I think itís stupid to close down a store because of them Ė no individual or group of individuals has ownership of a business through the abusive practice of thieving. On the other hand, considering neighborhoods donít really turn people in these days, a business will simply close its doors.

When all of them suddenly leave the south side, where will people go to do anything? Itís almost as if the companies are telling us that unless we get rid of the crime, we wonít bother to come back at all.

Something can be done about this, but what?

Posted by Matthew at June 27, 2006 01:33 AM | TrackBack
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