Sports News Without Access, Favor, Or Discretion

Here Is The Worst Lede About Chicago Gun Violence. We Tried To Top It.

Cal Thomas, a syndicated columnist who is employed by Tribune Media, recently wrote about the ongoing gun violence in Chicago. This is how the article begins, complete with typo:

Frank Sinatra's song about Chicago, "My Kind of Town," "a the town that won't let you down," seems dated in light of last weekend's shooting spree that left 16 dead and dozens wounded in 53 separate incidents. According to the Chicago Tribune, "The victims were among 82 people shot between Thursday afternoon and early Monday."

That is the worst lede anyone on the Deadspin staff has ever read in an article about violence in Chicago, but that didn't stop us (as we've done before) from trying to top it. Here's what we came up with:

Chicago's Chaka Khan once sang, "I'm every woman / It's all in me." Well, if she were living in Chicago today, that'd include a lot of bullets.

Frank Sinatra once sang of "strangers in the night, exchanging glances," but the only thing strangers are exchanging in Chicago these days is gunfire.


"I'm lonely most all of the time," Roy Clark once sang in "When the Wind Blows in Chicago." That's how some Chicagoans must feel now, after 16 people were shot dead last weekend.

"25 or 6 to 4"? Try 82.

Chicago wasn't such a "Sweet Home" for 82 people this past weekend.

Chicago's Wrigley Field hosts the most famous renditions of "Take Me Out to the Ballgame." But 16 Chicagoans are now incapable of caring "if they ever get back," and won't. Because they're dead.


Getting shot in Chief Keef's hometown of Chicago? That's that shit I don't like.

Chicago's own Kanye West once sang, "I am a God." Well, if he hadn't left his home town, he might be dead instead.


Gunplay was heavy in Chicago "Saturday in the Park," not to mention Thursday, Friday, and Sunday.

Chicago native Richard Marx, in his song "Right Here Waiting," sang, "Wherever you go, whatever you do / I will be right here waiting for you." He'd be advised not to wait in Chicago, or he might get shot, like 82 of the city's residents did in one weekend.


A whopping 82 people were shot in Chicago this weekend, as foretold by the classic Sufjan Stevens song "Shootout in Grant Park (Oh, How the Angels' Trembling Voices Roared!) [Reprise]."

Neko Case wrote "Star Witness" about a park in Chicago. Today, she'd be a star witness for the prosecution in a string of murders.


"The answer's clear and crisp / But it's all lies / Gotta fight / But what's the fight / Chicago died," sang Articles of Faith. But they didn't mean it this literally.

"You're ridin' high in April / Shot down in May," sang Frank Sinatra in his famous song "That's Life." Well, 82 people in Chicago aren't riding so high today, because they got shot down in July.


In 1985, the Chicago Bears recorded "Super Bowl Shuffle." After a string of shootings, many Chicago residents will be shuffling due to paralyzing bullet wounds to the spine.

"My Super Bowl Shuffle will set you free," sang Willie Gault in that iconic 1985 number. But Gault's shuffle can't set free the 16 people who died this past weekend.


Paper Lace should consider changing their famous song's title to "The (Four) Night(s) (16 People in) Chicago Died."

Getting shot was a "Hard Habit to Break" for 82 Chicagoans this weekend.

Chicago natives Fall Out Boy once sang, "I am dying to tell you anything you want to hear" on their hit single "Sugar, We're Going Down," which seems incredibly self-involved now that 16 people have died and 82 people were shot in Chicago since Thursday.


In "Route 66," Nat King Cole praised traveling westward from Chicago to enjoy the scenic route to California. But there's another reason to "get your kicks": avoiding the pattern of gun violence that left 16 people dead in the streets.

Is Chicago? Is Not Chicago? If you want to live, maybe stick with "is not."

Muddy Waters revolutionized the Chicago blues sound in the 1960s; if he recorded songs there this weekend, the percussion would probably be the sound of 82 people getting shot outside.


In Chicago native Lupe Fiasco's song "Kick, Push," he rapped, "Matter of fact, first time he got on it he slipped / Landed on his hip and busted his lip." Sixteen Chicagoans won't ever have a chance to fall off a skateboard, because they were shot dead while trying to flee a flurry of gunfire.

"Oh, baby don't you want to go?" sang Robert Johnson of "Sweet Home Chicago." Probably you don't, because while you and your kids walk your dog down to the lake, you will be shot in the face—yet another victim of gang violence.


"If You Leave Me Now," there's a good chance it's because you were in Chicago, and someone shot you.

"I guess you never know what you got till it's gone," rapped Chicago artist Kanye West on "Home." Ironic, considering the 16 Chicagoans who lost their lives this weekend.


They once sang, "You've lost that loving feeling," but the Brothers aren't feeling very Righteous now that 16 people in Chicago have lost every feeling. They are dead.

Rapper Twista has long been regarded as one of the fastest rappers in the world. The only thing faster, it seems, is the rate at which his fellow Chicagoans are shooting each other dead.


In his 1973 version of "Send in the Clowns," Frank Sinatra mused, "Isn't it bliss? / Don't you approve? / One who keeps tearing around / One who can't move," imagery that comes to mind tonight as we learn new details in the case of John Wayne Gacy, Chicago's Killer clown, who raped and violently murdered at least 33 young men over a six-year period.

Rock band Chicago once sang the song "Wake Up Sunshine." Sixteen people in Chicago last weekend were shot, and did not.


Before anyone at Wrigley Field could answer the question, "Hey, Chicago, whaddya say?" they were shot.

"Twist & Shout After Getting Shot" would be a more appropriate song for Ferris Bueller to lip-sync on the streets of Chicago this weekend.


Peter Cetera once sang, "No one needs you more than I need you." Well, if he was serenading a bulletproof vest, I can think of 82 Chicagoans who needed it more than he did this past weekend.

When Ferris Bueller sang "Twist & Shout" on the streets of Chicago, he could've been referring to the movements and noises of 82 bodies which suffered bullet wounds this past weekend.


"It's hard for me to say I'm sorry," Chicago gunmen sang to 82 people this past weekend.

"All things go, all things go," sang Sufan Stevens of hipster Chicago. In the mean streets of the South Side, though, the only thing that "goes" is the bullet that "goes" into the face of a gangbanger, shot by a rival contesting for a "corner."


In "Dear Chicago," Ryan Adams sang that "I'm going to die alone and sad." This weekend 16 people joined Adams in being dead and sad, though probably in the opposite order.

"I'm Dying Tomorrow," sang Alkaline Trio, in 2001. It felt prescient, but never more so than last Wednesday.


Chicago's Smashing Pumpkins had a big '90s hit with "Disarm," but not everyone in town got the message.

At least 82 folks didn't think Chicago was "That Toddling Town" as bullets tore through their flesh last week.


"We will never be the same," sang Chicago's Smashing Pumpkins in "Tonight, Tonight." The same could be said of the 16 people who were killed in Chicago this past weekend.

You know who sucks? Wilco. You know who else sucks? Whoever shot 82 people in Chicago last weekend.


"Ayo, two words, Chi town, South side, world wide / Cuz I, rep that, till I, fuckin' die," rapped Kanye West on his hit song "Two Words." Unlike the 16 people who were shot dead in Chicago over the holiday weekend, Kanye still has plenty of time to make good on that last line.

"Where the hell are my damn croissants?" inquired Chicago native Kanye West, his words drowned out by gunfire.


"We could have been somebody," Chicago's Kanye West wails on "Blood on the Leaves." The 16 Chicagoans who were killed by gunfire this past weekend probably feel the same way.

Paper Lace's novelty pop hit "The Night Chicago Died" was introduced to a new generation on the High Fidelity soundtrack. But for the 16 Chicagoans who died over a weekend soundtracked by the pop-pop-pop of gunplay, that song probably doesn't seem so novel.


"You keep me standing tall," sang Chicago's Peter Cetera. He wasn't singing to bullets, that's for sure. Neither were the 82 Chicagoans who were gunned down over the past long weekend. They were just getting shot a bunch.

High Fidelity, a film set in Chicago, is beloved by many. If a movie was made about the 82 people who were shot in Chicago over one weekend, it would probably be called High Mortality.


"You Wake Up in the Morning in Chicago," was a song composed in 1915. A century later, this is debatable.

Rossini's "William Tell Overture" has no lyrics, but the title suggests a stunning lack of awareness for weapons safety, especially in light of the goings-on in Chicago, where 16 people have been shot dead recently.


Despite Chicago native Lupe Fiasco's 2010 mainstream hit "The Show Goes On," the show won't go on for the 16 Chicagoans killed last weekend.

"Set me on fire," sang Chicago's Steve Albini in Big Black's 1986 classic "Kerosene." Probably better to be set on fire than to be shot, as 82 Chicagoans were this weekend in a spate of gun violence.


"Hold me now," sang Peter Cetera. Well fuck you, Pete, some of us are busy stanching a fuckload of bullet wounds in Chicago.

Share This Story

Get our newsletter