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Column: Arne Duncan takes on Chicago’s violent crime wave at the grassroots

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As Chicago ended the summer on pace to have its highest annual murder tally in a quarter century, I asked former Education Secretary Arne Duncan where he finds hope for peace on the city’s violence-plagued streets.

“My hope, Clarence, is based on what I see our men do every day,” he said, referring to Chicago CRED (Create Real Economic Destiny), the street outreach organization he co-founded in 2016, which focuses on individuals who are most likely to carry a gun or get shot.

“I can tell you story after story of men who have been through horrific stuff — who, frankly, have done horrific stuff — that are now leading their communities,” Duncan said. “One of our most valuable staff members killed one of my good friends in high school, killed Ben Wilson, a story you remember well.”

Sure. You didn’t have to be a sports fan to be stunned by the death of Ben Wilson, a nationally acclaimed basketball star at Simeon Vocational High School, who was fatally shot in an off-campus altercation in 1984. The shooter, Billy Moore, who went to another high school, was convicted of murder as an adult and released from........

© Chicago Tribune

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