Scale back, Boystown
The sad events in Florida leading up to and including the killing of Trayvon Martin should be a wake-up call to a group of Boystown residents who, last summer, ramped up their neighborhood watch efforts.
The leaders of the Take Back Boystown group and their followers have drawn lots of negative attention and criticism for some of their tactics, which include conducting safety marches and capturing/posting video online of people they deem suspicious. While the Halsted Street stabbing video, shot from the balcony of a residence, proved invaluable, numerous other videos shot by sticking cameras in the faces of passersby are unseemly.
The aggressive stance of the Take Back Boystown group (which is not only implied by its name but also displayed by the actions of some of the group's members) is extremely troubling. The group has attracted concerned residents and ardent racists alike, and its leaders have been irresponsible in their actions while attempting to maintain their anonymity. With the warm months already upon us, now is the time for those truly concerned about neighborhood safety to get involved in activities aimed at maintaining a welcoming and safe environment.
Clearly, the way to do that is not by implementing tactics aimed at keeping out those deemed suspicious based on their age and race.
As a longtime volunteer in the MACS study (since 1984), I want to make sure that people know where they can transfer their participation if they are not satisfied with their current location. I moved my appointments to Northwestern University, and they were glad to have me.
CORE Center, 2020 W. Harrison St., Chicago, Ill., 60612; Carmon Houston, 312-572-4552, CHouston@cookcountyhhs.org
Northwestern University, Division of Infectious Diseases, 645 N. Michigan Ave., Suite 900, Chicago, Ill., 60611; Theresa Keeley, RN, 312-695-0186, firstname.lastname@example.org
Also please see:
Open letter: Anti-GLBT church using Gale School facilities, 2012-03-31