Columnist Mary Mitchell got right to the heart of the issue of violence in Chicago when she wrote about detainees she had interviewed at the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center. The message from “Leonard,” a 17-year-old raised by his mother, said it all.“It’s only so much a lady can teach you. They can’t show you as a man could show you,” he said. “You need your black role models because if the streets become your role model they crumble you up and beat you back up.”
Although still a juvenile, Leonard has a 7-month-old son, and has apparently matured enough to say that since he didn’t have a father in his life when he was younger, he looked forward to giving his son what he didn’t have, and making a better life for him. Heseems to recognize that a good way to reduce the violence that plagues Chicago and reduce the appeal of gangs and guns is for more men to accept what it means to be fathers to their children.
Jeffrey L. Stern, Highland Park
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Most of Saturday’s protesters in Chicago were probably residents of Illinois, and the vast majority most likely were from Cook County. Their intent, as I see it, was to protest President Trump and his perceived future handling of women’s rights issues and other important topics. They missed an opportunity, however, to address what is already happening — corruption and mismanagement by our state, city and county legislators and politicos.
A bloc such as the one that showed up on Saturday would be a force to be reckoned with if it turned its attention to Illinois House Speaker Michael J. Madigan and Gov. Bruce Rauner, who must understand there is a mandate to solve the ills of Illinois.
Steve Babyk , East Ukrainian Village