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NOTHING TO LOSE: Sun-Times columnist blames “thugs-in-training” for United Center shutdown

August 17, 2017

Sun-Times photo

The Sun-Times' Mary Mitchell actually blamed "thugs-in-training" with nothing to lose for closing the United Center in recent days.  The famous home of the Chicago Bulls hosted young people from across Chicago for the West Haven Safe Summer Basketball League championship games.  However, huge fights broke out and organizers decided to close the games down rather than risk escalating violence.  

But Mary Mitchell blaming thugs in training?  She has earned her reputation as "Moprah" for her undying support of the criminal element in Chicago.  However, something caused her to see the light for a moment.  Or maybe it's a case of a broken clock is right twice each day.  Either way, she writes well this time.  

Maybe she's just sick of these urban youth that have "nothing to lose" causing so many problems in her fair city.

Her piece does a good job raising an important point though.  These urban youth driving Chicago's crime problem have nothing to lose.  The criminal justice system in Chicagoland isn't even catch and release, because most of the time cops don't make arrests.  Why make arrests when prosecutors won't prosecute and judges won't put violent offenders in prison?  And even if these bad people go to prison, spending time in the Illinois Department of Corrrections is like dog-years in reverse.

These "thugs in training" have no self-control or self-discipline.  What's more, they have nothing to lose as there are no consequences for their actions.

From the Sun-Times:

It is shameful that a few bad apples ruined a free event at the United Center on Monday night.

Despite having private security guards, comprised of off-duty police officers, and calling for backup from uniformed Chicago Police officers, organizers were forced to shut down the West Haven Safe Summer Basketball League championship games when multiple fistfights broke out.

More than 7,000 young people were robbed of an opportunity to enjoy an event in what was supposed to have been a safe environment — all because a bunch of thugs-in-training decided to attack each other inside the arena.

“We have been doing this for nine years, and there have been no problems, no fights, no fatalities, and no incidents,” said Earnest Gates, executive director of West Haven Safe Summer Basketball League.

Gates said Monday’s crowd was the largest ever because of two outstanding players on two high school teams.

When fights broke out in the food court and started mushrooming, the organizers made a decision to stop the tournament.

…The United Center has donated its building and other supportive services for the tournament for the past five years.

Photo via Sun-Times

Earnest Gates.

“We will have to discuss it and see if the tournament goes back there. If it doesn’t happen, the only thing that angers me and gets my goat is I watch the kids walk across the floor and go into the locker room. We used to tell them that was Michael Jordan’s locker or that was Scottie Pippen’s locker, to make the experience that much bigger for them,” he said.

“On Monday, there was a young kid who came in and started crying like a baby. I thought something was wrong, but the kid said, ‘I just can’t believe I am here,’” Gates told me.

…Gates puts the blame on 12, 13, 14 and 15-year-olds that came to the United Center to settle a Facebook beef.

“They showed up. They got in free. In years past we could call up the [gang] chiefs and tell them what we were going to be doing and to keep those folks in line,” Gates said.

“Now [gang members] are in another universe. It doesn’t take much to set them off because they don’t have anything to lose. There is no reason for them to preserve the safe summer legacy.”

Gates estimates that no more than 30 kids took part of the violence.

Director Gates, there's plenty of video evidence that shows 30 or more kids beating on one another in each fight…  and fights broke out everywhere!




7 Responses to NOTHING TO LOSE: Sun-Times columnist blames “thugs-in-training” for United Center shutdown

  1. JAS on August 17, 2017 at 6:42 pm

    What you tolerate, you encourage.  Chicago is past hope, I'm afraid.

  2. Old Number 3 on August 17, 2017 at 8:20 pm

    You can take the pig out of the sty, but you can't take the sty out of the pig.


  3. Sam Whittemore on August 17, 2017 at 8:35 pm

    Nothing to lose and no respect for authority.  A recipe for…  Chicago violence!

    Who is raising these people?

    The KKK couldn't do a better job at killing black people.


  4. ken on August 18, 2017 at 12:28 am

    I am quite relieved to know that Chitcago is about #3 on Kim Jong Un's list of U.S. targets.  hell, I don't even think that'd be cause for war!  


    The hell with chitcago. 

  5. Doc L on August 18, 2017 at 6:20 am

    No positive upbringing, disempowered teachers, no consequences. Formula for young adults with no self control.

  6. David Deplorable on August 18, 2017 at 7:15 am

    Goddamn monsters.

    But they have a strong sense of not morality,  a hard work ethic or common decency, but of entitlement.

    LBJ had to be a Klansman with his Great Society plan.

  7. Jackie on August 22, 2017 at 5:05 pm

    well they just came on t v. And. Arrests are down. " significant ".  Well that's  good to know that it's safer up there now.     If  chief  circle jerker would tell us where we can park   Maybe we should go up there …..  But that 9 dead. 54 injured weekend scares me  …