Excuse me, but Derrick Rose 'is' a role model

December 29, 2011|By Bryan Crawford, For RedEye

I'm not from Lake Bluff. I've never lived in Lake Bluff. I've never been to Lake Bluff.

But sight unseen, I know that Lake Bluff is a much better community to be born into, live in and grow up in. Especially when you compare it to Englewood.

That's where I'm from. That's where I lived. That's where I grew up.

As a son of Englewood, I was immediately incensed and offended by Mark Yost's column in the Chicago Tribune, "Derrick Rose is no role model."

Why?

Because Mr. Yost lives in Lake Bluff and would probably be terrified to even walk the streets of the murder capital of Chicago; the place Derrick Rose and I grew up and the community Rose was blessed to leave thanks to his God-given athletic ability.

Mr. Yost has no idea of the inherent dangers that exist in Englewood. He has no idea about the plight of the residents who live there, especially kids like Derrick who will tell you how he and his friends had pre-planned escape routes to safety just in case shootings broke out, as they so often do on the South Side of Chicago.

Rose IS a role model—especially to Englewood kids—because he made it out of an area that kills its sons and daughters daily and where "hope" is more likely to be a girl's name rather than a feeling that exists.

And I'm sure if given a choice, Derrick would've loved to have grown up in a cushy suburb where both parents live at home, where you can probably leave your doors unlocked and where kids can play safely and leave their bikes outside and not have to worry about them being stolen.

Must be nice.

Bryan Crawford is a RedEye special contributor.

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