Free Study Guide for There Are No Children Here by Alex Kotlowitz|
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THERE ARE NO CHILDREN HERE - FREE BOOK SUMMARY / ANALYSIS
At the age of ten, Lafeyette had his first encounter with death when he saw someone killed. This was the beginning of the brutal drugs wars at Henry Horner when Jimmie Lee made his move to take control of the projects. The first death in the war was a young Disciple named Baby Al who, after being shot, collapsed outside the Rivers’ apartment. Two years after he bled to death, his blood still stains the stairwell. A few weeks later, as the two brothers played on the jungle gym, shots rang out again. Lafeyette grabbed the triplets while Pharoah ran in panic. He and Porkchop hid in a mound of foul smelling garbage until they were sure it was safe to come out. They saw as they ran a little girl collapse from being shot. It was later learned that she had a leg wound and would be all right. This was the first time that Pharoah told his mother that he didn’t want to know what was happening.
To add to the deteriorating conditions there, the Vice Lords knocked out all the lights around Horner, set up wandering sentries, and communicated on walkie-talkies. They wore their baseball caps with the bill turned to the left, made the Playboy Bunny their symbol along with a five-pointed star. Their other symbols included a top hat for shelter, a cane for strength, a glove for purity and a champagne glass for conservatism or propriety. Most of their recruits came from prison where they learned the meaning of the symbols. Jimmie Lee’s business grossed $50,000 to $100,000 a week.
December 13, 1986, a frenzy began that would last through the summer. Larry Wallace,
a member of a rival gang was viciously shot from every conceivable angle and died
in the halls of Horner. It was the beginning of what the residents there began
to call the “death train” that had driven smack through their community.
This chapter serves to explain how the drug trade brought
nothing but misery to the people who lived at Henry Horner Homes. Jimmie may have
seemed like a Godsend to some people there, but in truth, he brought horror and
death and drove the already hopeless residents into a lower state of existence.
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Clapsaddle, Diane. "TheBestNotes on There Are No Children Here".
. 09 May 2017