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slonezp

Immune To The Violence

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Wasn't sure where to post this, so I stuck it here. My son calls me, in a panic, tonight shortly after he left school on the northside of Chicago. He hasn't lived in Chicago since he was a toddler and is 24 now. He's freaking out because he witnessed a drive by as he was getting in his car after class. This is the second shooting in the same amount of months near the campus. The last one, the bullets went thru windows of the campus dorm. 

I moved out of the city proper 15 years ago but I've worked in the worst of the worst neighborhoods for almost 30 years. I've seen the shootings and stabbings and drugs and prostitution and racism and dead bums and people covered in urine and feces and the crack heads and the gangbangers and even a decapitated body at a job I was working at. I've also been robbed at gunpoint. There were 36 people shot in Chicago this past weekend.

I made a joke out of it. The violence has no effect on me. Business as usual. My "Just deal with it " attitude seemed to have upset him. How does one assure their children this is not normal when, by all my accounts it is normal? How do I assure myself this is not normal, or am I beyond help :grin: ? He was upset with my reaction and ended the phone call.

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I'm away at school but every year when it starts to warm up I know people are going to die or at least get shot. It does not bother me at all anymore. If they want to shoot and kill themselves go ahead, I do not need them in my life. I do not have any pity for people that do or sell drugs . 

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It is just a sad comment on the state of the human condition. It seems our only defense is to numb ourselves to the endless parade of human wreckage that we watch every night on the news. The lives that people are willing to accept out of pure ignorance and dysfunction is appalling. For most of us, you will always have a choice, and as you choose, so shall you be.

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