Letters to Mayor Rahm Emanuel from Chicago Public School students.
so, my students are trying to get a response form rahm emanuel because they continuously say that no one cares about them or their neighborhoods.
they wrote letters and they are posted to our wordpress page and also some will be re-posted on tumblr, since people seem to like this thing more.
here’s the other site with more letters: dearmayor.wordpress.com
please, please please reblog this as widely as possible. we are trying to get people to care. we are hoping to get some sort of response.
things are still not well.
We are trying to get every student in the school to read the Catcher and the Rye and be able to discuss it with teachers, co-workers and classmates alike. Our Catcher in the Rye book festival will… My students need 25 copies of The Catcher in the Rye and candy for prizes during our school wide celebration and reading of the book.
another book fest coming up! use the code CHEER for the next 4 days to get a matching donation dollar for dollar. thank you thank you thank you for keeping me afloat.
Dear Rahm Emanuel,
My name is Catherine. I’m a freshman. I don’t mean to bother you but I really have to let you know what’s happening in Chicago. Don’t get me wrong I love Chicago. Chicago is the best place you could live in. Anyone would like to be from “Chi-town”. The nicest sky scrapers here in Chicago.
I’m just going to be honest and straight forward. I don’t like how you don’t care about CPS. You would only care if your children were in public schools but since they’re not you could care less. I see no change in these schools at all. I take tests everyday and they’re all just for the “City”. Were getting graded in the same thing each day I see no differences in these tests. I remember taking the test I’m taking now back in 7th grade. The same tests all over again. Ask me or whoever these tests are pretty pointless. Instead of making us take these tests give CPS more money so we could have more activities in our schools. We want to be more a part of this city. You just pay attention to the rich people. You put in more money to the north side.
When is the day all of this violence is going to stop? That’s what everyone would like to know. Chicago is so violent that they started calling it “Chiraq”. Illinois has the strictest gun law but yet murder rate. How many innocent people have died? A lot of innocent people die now a days. These stupid gang bangers just want to impress everyone and start shooting innocent people. Some guy died right in front of my house 2 years ago, I seen the guy that shoot him and the police came for like 3 days after that the guy that shot him was out free the police didn’t even do anything about it and why because the police simply doesn’t care about no one.
I also want to talk about the police. We need more police in Chicago. Not only I think that but everyone does. The pizza gets faster to your house than the police do. We need people to feel safe here not scared. People are getting shot over here but where are the police to be found in Dunkin Donuts.
The changes that can be made would be worrying more of CPS children more. Get people to act more. Get people to volunteer or help out more about our community. I demand ACTION and CHANGE in our city. Thank you for your time.
Dear Rahm Emmanuel,
My name is Juanita but all my friends call me Lil Red. I am 15 years old. One thing I like about Chicago is down town. Down town is so beautiful it’s decorated with lights of different colors. Down town is very clean and peaceful, you can go down town where there are cops everywhere. I just have one question and that’s why can’t it be like that in Chicago on the west side and south side?
In my neighborhood you cannot walk down the street without seeing gang members hang out on the block or hearing loud gun shots. As you walk down my block you will see a lot of abandoned buildings where there is graffiti written on them. Just the other day my auntie’s house got shot up and it took the police forever to come. In that amount of time somebody could have gotten hurt really bad and wouldn’t have survived. You don’t know what it feels like to have to look behind your back every five seconds. You don’t know how it feel to be terrified to step on my block because you don’t know what gang is into it with you block. You don’t know what it feels like to have to duck and dodge bullets every day. You need to get on your job and do what we need you to do. If you don’t believe me come to Chicago without body guards, you won’t last five days. My brother got shot 2 times. Once 1 time and the second time 2 times. He wouldn’t have survived the second time but lucky he did. I am afraid that I won’t live to see the next day that’s why I don’t go outside. Will you help us please? To help maybe you could add3 policeman on each main street. Do whatever you need to help us because you don’t know how it feel being in my shoes.
see more letters and pictures as they come in at http://dearmayor.wordpress.com/
LB, author of the zines Truckface, Awkward Spaces, and So Midwest is one of my favorite writers of all time. I first met them back in 2007 at Denver Zine Fest, when they were running Stranger Danger Distro (now run by a close friend of LB’s). Their magnum opus, So Midwest, is a novel-length…
this is how i feel right now. so excited to be putting together the final touches and cover for the truckface anthology (2 volumes!)!! seriously cannot contain my excitement right now. freaking freaking freaking the fuck out with joy. freaking out!
Remember the Chicago teacher’s strike last year? There was a lot of misinformation about why the teachers were striking and what kind of conditions they were living and teaching under. Truckface 16 clears a lot of that up. LB, author of my favorite zine of all time, So Midwest (which is unfortunately out of print), is currently a teacher in the Chicago Public Schools. LB was a leader in organizing the strike at their school and explains what went on before, during, and after the strike, as well as what many still don’t understand about the changing nature of public education (and the danger of reforms being instituted by Rahl Emanuel, Arne Duncan, and President Obama). What was interesting about the strike was that it wasn’t about higher wages or better benefits for the teachers, it was about keeping schools open, offering education that wasn’t just about how to pass standardized tests, and y’know, maybe having enough desks for the kids to sit at.
This zine is not wonky (technical) and will not only appeal to those already interested in the politics of education. LB’s writing is hilarious, hopeful, at and at times understandably bitter. It’s interesting to see how despite being overworked to point of exhaustion (and putting instant coffee in their coffee) LB finds hope in moments where they are able to help protect a teenage girl from relationship abuse, let a queer student know that she is not alone, or get a student to think critically about the nature of American education. It’s inspiring to read LB’s stories of dressing in drag to get kids interested in The Hunger Games, and having them passionately debate whether or not LB should teach Dave Eggers’ Zeitoun next year after the real life protagonist, who the students had all become attached to, was arrested for beating his wife.
LB’s writing sucks you in immediately, and I honestly could not put this zine down until I finished. Check it out at dorisdorisdoris.com.
In 2007, I was a 17 year old boy in high school who at first impression could be profiled as a criminal. I wore baggy clothing, had a foul mouth, and I fit the physical profile of guys who commit crimes every day. A lot like Trayvon.
After Trayvon’s death, white supremacist, Klanklannon, hacked into Trayvon’s email to try and find more pictures of him with gold teeth and smoke, things that would “justify” killing him as he made his way back to his family unarmed.
But what he found was college scholarship applications. Yes, Trayvon Martin had hopes of going to college to study aeronautics. He was also taking honors courses in high school. Even though Trayvon and I are a lot alike, that’s where we differ. He was actually achieving more than I did and had much bigger dreams as a junior in high school.
Another way we differ, is in the opportunity to live out our potential. I’m sure a neighborhood watchman wouldn’t have picked me to obtain a degree 5 years later, start a non-profit, write a book, and go on to reach thousands every day. And he didn’t pick Trayvon either, so sadly we’ll never know what his story could’ve been.
All of this to say, even if you don’t consider yourself racist, be careful of the stereotypes you draw based on looks. Everyone isn’t what they seem, but everyone deserves a chance to prove that.
- Derrick Jaxn
Please share. You may save someone’s life.
i really hope you guys like this story beCAUSE IM GOING TO REBLOG IT EVERY DAY.