After the November 9 murder of recent University of Chicago graduate Shaoxiong “Dennis” Zheng, the Chicago Thinker took to the streets to ask Hyde Park locals for their response to Tuesday’s bloodshed.
When asked whether they feel safe in Hyde Park, residents responded negatively. “I have grandchildren that I walk down 53rd [Street], and there was just an incident where there was a random shooting. I walk down that way everyday with my grandchildren!” one woman exclaimed. Resoundingly, residents lamented the increase in Chicago crime.
Hyde Park locals also called for increased law enforcement, challenging the rhetoric of leftist UChicago student groups like “CareNotCops” and “UChicago United,” who advocate to defund and abolish the University of Chicago Police Department.
“We need police! Are you kidding me? We need police!” the same Hyde Park resident exclaimed.
Reflecting on Chicago’s surging crime, a different woman suggestd “bringing in the National Guard.”
“They say ‘black lives matter.’ If they matter, when are we going to stop shooting and killing one another?” one man asked. “If black lives matter […] we’ve got to stand up for each other.”
Zheng was the third UChicago affiliate to be shot and killed this year, while additional shootings, armed robberies, carjackings, and other violent crimes continue to terrorize the broader Hyde Park community.
18-year-old Alton Spann has been arrested and charged with Zheng’s murder, Chicago Police Supt. David Brown announced Friday.
Audrey Unverferth is the Chicago Thinker's co-founder, publisher, and editor-in-chief. She graduated from the University of Chicago in 2022 with a B.A. in Russian & East European Studies (With Honors) and Law, Letters, and Society. In her free time, Audrey loves to collect books, swim in the ocean, and camp with her family. Follow her on Twitter @audrey__unver or email firstname.lastname@example.org.