I’ve recently written two essays for the outstanding literary website, CrimeReads. The first is a review of Hemingway’s underrated novel, To Have and Have Not – an essay that doubles as an exploration of Hemingway’s radical politics.
For lighthearted fare, I joined the CrimeReads tradition of recommending getaway movies for the pandemic. My choice is the 2003 potboiler starring Denzel Washington, Out of Time.
Every summer in Chicago, police, residents, and reporters expect hundreds of murders to occur in the city. Headlines of drive by shootings that leave a corpses curbside are routine. For the first time, lawmakers are proposing a plan for the destruction of street gangs in Chicago.
Illinois Senators Durbin and Rich have crossed party lines to collaboratively secure $30 million in federal money to fund the use of racketeering laws against street gangs. For too long, evil and empty-headed thugs have terrorized the streets of poor neighborhoods – intimidating law abiding people into silence, holding children hostage to their pathetic turf wars, and driving middle class people away.
Congressman Bobby Rush of Illinois responded to the smart idea with race baiting demagoguery. He called federal targeting of all gang members for arrest an “elitist, white boy” solution, and insisted that what gang members really need is “jobs and education.”
In my new article for The Atlantic – “Senator Durbin’s and Kirk’s ‘Elitist, White Boy’ Plan to Fight Gangs is Right” – I celebrate the Senators for their bipartisan aggression in the attack of a serious scourge on our society.
I also show how the disingenuous “jobs and education” lament undermines, disrespects, and insults all of the murderous gang members’ victims – the decent, law abiding and working poor who inhabit their “territory.”