CHICAGO – Over 100 hundred anti-violence protestors shut down Lake Shore Drive and marched to Wrigley Field on Thursday afternoon to demand Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s resignation and raise awareness of gun violence in Chicago.
The Chicago Police Department reported that about 150 protestors attended the demonstration and no arrests were made. Protestors began the rally at Lake Shore Drive at 4 p.m. and marched through the North Side after 5 p.m.
Lazaro Madrigal, 30, attended the protest because he is worried about the safety of his 8-year-old daughter in the Chicago Lawn neighborhood.
“I fear for my life every day, thinking about a bullet coming through my daughter’s living room,” Madrigal said. “We can’t live like this any longer.”
During the Lake Shore Drive shutdown, demonstrators wrote messages of peace, love and hope on the concrete as part of the Schools Say Enough Sidewalk Challenge. The initiative gives people the opportunity to express their thoughts about Chicago gun violence.
Jacqueline von Edelberg, 51, provided the chalk for the sidewalk challenge during the Lake Shore Drive shutdown and the Dan Ryan shutdown last month. Edelberg hopes that Chicago schools become places that are free from the threat of gun violence.
“I want to see kids being able to go to school and not worry that they are going to get shot on their way there or their way home,” Edelberg said.
Rev. Gregory Seal Livingston co-organized the shutdown and march as president of the Coalition for a New Chicago. Livingston’s main goal was to redistribute the pain of disparaged communities and open the eyes of North Side residents to the segregation of Chicago.
“Many of them have never witnessed a crowd like this,” Livingston said. “The only black people they see are on the field.”
While marching past the bars near Wrigley Field, protestors shouted at patrons to to leave the bars and join the demonstration in the streets.
Doris McGinness, 57, carried a sign that said “North Side Ignores Gun Violence” throughout the demonstration.
“The lack of opportunity that is so different from one side of the city to the other, it’s like it’s two cities,” McGinness said.
Alice Herron, 69, lives on the West Side of Chicago and said that the energy at the demonstration inspired her to continue marching.
“Everyone is so committed, and it touches my heart,” Herron said. “I’m am so very proud to be involved.”