Matthew Kaplan Photography

Lake Shore Drive & Wrigley Field Protest Against Gun Violence - Chicago - August 2, 2018

August 2, 2018

Late on a sultry Chicago Thursday afternoon, several hundred anti-violence protesters gathered in front of the high rise buildings near Belmont Avenue and the entrance to Lake Shore Drive. Their goal was to shut down that vital thoroughfare, then march to Wrigley Field, where a 7:05 pm Cubs game was scheduled. The crowd was not nearly as large as the one that blocked the north bound lanes of the Dan Ryan Expressway on July 7th. Nor were they as well organized or well disciplined. However, after successfully closing Lake Shore Drive for a few minutes (with the help of the numerous police officers escorting the demonstration) the march picked up steam, and participants, as it paraded noisily through the affluent Lakeview neighborhood, to the crowded ball park.

Covering the event was a legion of news reporters and photojournalists. To me it seemed that the attending media folks, along with the police presence, easily outnumbered the demonstrators. Getting a shot of the organizer Tio Hardiman, and his colleagues, on the march was extremely difficult, due to the photographers’ scrum directly in their front. I was glad I had brought my monopod once again to use as a boom. Elevated vantage points were scarce and the police kept yelling at me to get down from the fences and garbage cans on which I kept climbing. Strangely, they didn’t stop me from clambering up the old rusty CTA truss work where Clark Street passes under the elevated tracks.

Although some of the more extreme demonstrators were calling for revolution and overthrow of the system, most participants seemed to be marching to publicize their dismay at the hideous level of gun violence that afflicts our city, and to express their anger at the perceived lack of police oversight. Beyond demands for the mayor and police superintendent’s resignations, possible solutions to these difficult problems were in short supply. At least to my aging eyes.

Matthew Kaplan 8/4/18

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