Just another Saturday night in Chicago
The shooting toll: 2 dead, 8 more wounded. Most of them random. Most of them involving men under the age of 25.
Are they all African American? The Chicago Tribune does not give the race of the victims or the shooters. But you'd be hard pressed to find a white face on the South Side and West Side neighborhoods where these shootings occurred:
A 22-year-old man was fatally shot at a Far South Side liquor store Saturday evening, police said, and a 46-year-old man was killed about 45 minutes later.
At least six others were shot on the South and West sides overnight.
The younger man was shot to death at the store near 133rd Street and Indiana Avenue about 8:45 p.m., said Chicago Police Department News Affairs Officer Darryl Baety. Someone outside fired, hitting the man in the chest, police said.
The Cook County medical examiner's office identified him as Timothy Scott, of the 13300 block of South Calumet Avenue. He was pronounced dead at the scene about 9 p.m., officials said.
About 9:30 p.m., the 46-year-old man was shot in the chest and right bicep and found in an alley by responding officers, according to police. Officers found Randy Streeter, 46, on the 1800 block of West 63rd Street in the West Englewood neighborhood, authorities said.
We live in a country where the race of the victim and the shooter actually matter - that the tragedy of an early death can be quantified by the color of the skin of the dead person's assailant. If both victims are black, or the victim is white and the shooter is black, this is somehow less meaningful, less important, less a tragedy than if a "white Hispanic" kills an unarmed young black man.
What's wrong with that picture? How did we reach a point where this kind of race madness afflicts both white and black?
Hundreds of people marched in support of "justice" for Trayvon Martin in Chicago on Sunday. Everyone wishes for this, whether it lead to Mr. Zimmerman's punishment for violating the law or his exoneration. Who will march for justice for Timothy Scott? Or the ten victims of gun violence last weekend in Chicago? Or the dozens of other dead people killed around the country in random and not so random shootings? Each death every bit the monumental loss for that family as for the family of young Mr. Martin. Each killing wracking the neighborhood and community where the dead lay as the pain caused by Mr. Martin's death in Sanford, FL.
Selective outrage is morally reprehensible. Those who seek to make political hay out of this tragedy - including the president of the United States - need to step back and examine the objective reality of the situation. You must reject the notion that Mr. Martin's death was any more tragic, any less a tragedy than any other death of a young man whose life was cut short by gun violence.
Because when you strip away everything else, all you are left with is politics. And if that is truly what all of this ink being spilled, pixels being created, and tears being shed - real or crocodile - is all about, the injustice, dear friends, is being perpetrated by you and not the Sanford police, Mr. Zimmerman, or the white race.