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Reporter: Chicago Is Dangerously Desensitized To Black Shooting Deaths

By Kate Shepherd in News on Dec 31, 2015 7:28PM

Protests following the Laquan McDonald video release. Braden Nesin/Chicagoist

The Tribune's William Lee has published a moving, must-read column about how dangerously desensitized Chicagoans have become to the shootings of African-Americans.

He focuses on the story of Dunbar Vocational Career Academy, a Bronzeville public school. Three teens attending the school were tragically murdered within days of one another this summer. But death has become an all-too regular occurrence at Dunbar.

Vonzell Banks was shot July 3 while playing basketball. Connita Richardson was found strangled at an abandoned building in Gary, Ind. on July 7. Kimythe Hubbard, was shot to death on July 9 in an empty lot in Woodlawn. All three students were 17 and their murders remain unsolved. If three New Trier or Northside College Prep students were killed like that, Lee asks, would the public have noticed?

Of course the problem stretches far beyond Dunbar. The South and West Sides of the city are plagued by needless violence and people who live there are left to ask the hard questions, according to Lee:

Do black lives truly matter? Would my own murder stay in the news? Would it be solved? Would anyone care past a day? Would there be any outrage? Or would it just be business as usual in Chiraq?