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Chiraq (HURTING) Black Chicago

The term Chiraq was created by rapper Chief Keef and his band of fatherless thugs. In short it means Chicago is more dangerous than Iraq and resembles Iraq relative to being a war torn City. The war in Chicago is centered around gang violence and the effects thereof. Basically gang violence is seen as sectarian violence in comparison to various foreign Countries.

Chief Keef is a known member of a re-organized faction of the Black Disciples street gang. I say re-organized because before his demise Jerome "Shorty" Freeman the patriarch of the Black Disciples used his energy and influence to change the image, philosophy and methodology of the Black Disciples by making the Black Disciples Nation centered around peace and redemption.

The image of Chiraq has circulated the globe. What people fail to understand is various Countries have Consulate Generals located throughout the Chicago, mostly Downtown. In 2009 I created and operated a program called THE ORDER OF SCHOLARS which was a summer youth program for girls and boys. The program operated mainly in Downtown Chicago. Each day participants of the program was given assignments to write about. They could write about any subject they wished. The program was educational first and recreational second. Among the many places I took my youth group were: BET Headquarters in Chicago, Ariel Capital Management, Amnesty International, Harold Washington Library, Millennium Park, True Star Magazine and of course several Consulate General offices.

One of the duties of the Consulate General is to provide his/her Country with a tourist report. The Consulate Generals office is also in place to help its people as it relates to transitioning from their home Country into their new place of residence, it also helps exchange students as well.

France has been told via their Consulate General and Ministry of Foreign Affairs to inform it's tourists when in Chicago AVOID the West Side of Chicago and the South Side of Chicago beginning at 59th street. To some this may not be a big deal, but to others such as myself I see this as another way to marginalize and stereotype African Americans and Hispanics who overwhelmingly live on the West and South Sides of Chicago.

Did you know the United Center is located on the West Side of Chicago? Did you know the mighty headquarters of the Rainbow Push Coalition and the Nation of Islam are located on the South Side of Chicago past 59th Street? Did you know the second richest street next to Michigan Avenue is (26th Street / Little Village) located on the Southwest Side of Chicago? Did you know the only Black news station celebrating 50 years WVON1690AM is located on the South Side of Chicago past 59th Street?

Who do we blame, do we blame Chief Keef and his promotion of the image of Chiraq? Do we blame Gangs? Or is the media to blame for continuously reporting gang violence in Black and Brown neighborhoods and communities?

According to Superintendent Garry McCarthy crime in Chicago is down, especially in comparison to the 1990's when tourism was at an all time high. No matter who's to blame rather the French Consulate General or the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, they both are dead wrong in categorizing entire neighborhoods and communities as unsafe. An apology should be made for such racist ignorance.

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jim allen