Take action for a safer community

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On Tuesday, Aug. 14, on Fox’s “Good day Chicago,” Hermene Hartman, founder of N’DIGO “Magapaper for the Urbane,” suggested the most unthinkable alternatives to deal with crime in the African-American community.

I say “our community” because that’s from where the problem stems. This same request came in 2010 by State Rep. La Shawn K. Ford and fellow Democrat, Cook County Commissioner (12th) John Fritchey, causing an uproar in the Austin community.

Their suggestion: Put the National Guard in our community to control the problem.

If it looks like a duck, it is a duck! But a duck by any other name is called martial law!

Martial law is the imposition of military rule by military authorities over designated regions on an emergency basis —(usually) only temporary — when the civilian government or civilian authorities fail to function effectively (e.g., maintain order and security, and provide essential services), when there are extensive riots and protests, or when the disobedience of the law becomes widespread.

In most cases, military forces are deployed to subdue the crowds, to secure government buildings and key or sensitive locations, and to maintain order. Generally, military personnel replace civil authorities and perform some or all their functions. In full-scale martial law, the highest-ranking military officer would take over, or be installed, as the military governor or as head of the government, thus removing all power from the previous executive, legislative, and judicial branches of government.

Solution: Occupy/Co-op!

Our communities have been overrun by drugs, gangs, disrespect, poverty, unemployment and low self esteem! A house divided against itself, cannot stand. We have become hostages of our communities and our children!

West Side Historical Society is asking for a co-op of all religious leaders, political leaders, social groups/organization, gang leaders, Masonic lodges/OES chapters, community papers and any leadership to begin to occupy our communities. Not for a photo opp, but for a Community Opp — opportunity to save ourselves.

Occupy our corners, neighborhoods, parks, schools and where ever there is a threat against our community. Be there! And don’t stop until we fix our neighborhoods. We need to stop looking for Superman to save us and invoke the community to take back its right not live in fear.


In our homes, we must demand the discontinued use of violent music, lyrics, games, movies, toys and improper clothing! We must begin to rebuild our family values, morals and ethics. And we must reconnect with our children and act like – No! – Be Parents!


Better social services, social centers for our children, after-school programs, jobs, better public transportation, better education,trade schools and workshops, better health services and proper police protection.


To get this done and force the powers that be to respond, we need to stop paying tithes and demand ministers take a stand; stop supporting community leaders whose organization don’t demand better services for the community. Stop allowing leaders to show up when there is a chance for a photo opp.  Demand political officials do what they promised or they will not get another term or be recalled. And most importantly – Vote!


A safer and productive community.

Drastic situations demand drastic measures!


Rickie P. Brown Sr. is president of the West Side Historical Society.

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