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Newspaper Page Text
though personally 111 admit I have
looked the other way a thousand
times rather than chase the boys for
doing what I have done myself in
fact, I've taken o ffmy coat and play
ed with them. "- -
Now, here is the real cause the
"secret" why the boys are chased.
Some measly httle crank of a man,
or some clothes-line fighting woman,
both of whom never had children,
and never will, calls up the police
station and makes such a howl that
the desk sergeant is compelled to
send a policeman to stop the boys.
If he didnt' do it it would mean the
"trial board." Because you must not
forget that the crank is always on the
job watching for the cop and if he
fails to show up the chief is called
on the 'phone or written a letter
I have had to chase my own. kids
and their pals, and make a crank old
dame believe I felt exhausted from
So don't blame the police for chas
ing boys we are blamed enough. W
are the goats.
Blame your city fathers, blame
your laws, your ordinances. Blame
your dull-witted or don't-care-a-dam
clergy that ought to have a gymna
sium and playground connected with
every church and school, if they real
ly represented God and had the wel
fare of the boys at ehart, instead of
their own comfort.
Tome a policeman chasing boys
from playing is a sin, a crime, and a
curse. It is filling our jails. Police
me nknow it But what can we do?
Kindly place the blame where it be
longs. Tell the boys the truth, that
tie cop is not to blame. For, next to'
being square with my God, I wish to
be on the square with the boys.
By William A. Cunnea
There was terrible logis in The Day
Book two days last week.
One day it showed how a railroad
has hogged hundreds of acres of land
. on the lake front.
Two days afterward Editor Coch
ran printed a letter a heart cry from
a boy who is strong and healthy, but
is run off the street with his play
mates wit hno place to go except
home or the poolrooms and ice cream
No one immediate issue is bigger
If anybody should ask me where
the gunmen, thieves and ballot-box
petty election crooks of Chicago
come from, I would guess first of all
that they come from those boys who
never had a chance to grow and de
velop in a healthy way.
Take an "alley rat," a boy forced to
play two-ol'-cat in an alley, because
there are no playgrounds anywhere
near him, or take any. boy who -is
chased off first one place and then
another where he tries to play, and
the school or the churches or the re
formers win have a harder time do
ing anything with that boy than they
wfll with a boy who has plenty of
A whOe ago I heard of a case that
proves this whole point. A boy hved
over on the West Side in a crowded
district, and the only place to play
was in the aUeys. He was run off
the streets. There were no vacant
lots free. And it was too far and it
cost car fare to go to a playground.
The boy stole and was sent to Pon
tiac. He came back to the same
neighborhood. He stole again and
went to Pontiac. He developed into
a first-class Uttle crook, always on
the lookout for excitement and plun
der. Then the famfty moved to p. flat
near Jackson Park. -For the first time
in his Ufe the boy had aU the room he
wanted to run t and jump and play
leapfrog and wrestle where there was
He has never been to Pontiac since.
He is a changed boy. All he needed
was room to grow. I understand Mr.
De Groot and the Playground Asso
ciation people have all the facts about
several cases 'like this. - ' r-