Pfleger: 'Where's the Outrage' Over South Side Crime?

By Franci Feirstein
|  Thursday, Jul 7, 2011  |  Updated 10:45 PM CDT
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Father Michael Pfleger on Thursday demanded more attention be paid to crime on the city's south and west sides.

The St. Sabina pastor said that while recent violence in Boystown and on Michigan Avenue have made headlines, children are being shot and killed every day elsewhere in the city.

"There's not the same kind of outrage by the city," said Pfleger.

While Pfleger applauded Ald. Tom Tunney (44th) for his call for more police resources in his north side community, he said the south and west sides need equal protection.

"My concern is that we have children shot and killed on the south side and the west side. I'm wondering what the aldermen are saying about that?" he said at an event honoring slain Officer Thor Soderberg. "If we're going to do special units on the north side we need special units on the south side. There should be violence nowhere."

Pfleger noted that a town hall meeting in Lakeview to address the recent violence was packed and said south side residents need to be just as involved in their community.

"We need to have a town hall meeting when someone is shot and killed, and pack it up... demand the same kind of attention," he said.

When asked why there's a different reaction when crime happens on the north side, Pfleger said it's because people become immune.

"It's like, 'Well, that happens there.' It's not normal anywhere!" ...  We need to make sure we're putting the spotlight on violence wherever it is, particularly when people are being killed," he said.

"The stealing of cell phones and the killing of children don't even sit in the same arena. I want to see massive outrage by people on the south side. But I want massive outrage by everyone in Chicago. I want Chicago to be outraged at the shooting and killing that's taking place. It's not just protecting Michigan Avenue," he said. "It's protecting children."

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