Choice of Evil

  Near the University of Chicago, an 18-year-old African American robbed and shot a 24-year-old Chinese student in a stolen car. Afterwards, he sold the latter’s laptop and iPhone for $100. Part of the money was used to pay his bill at the Subway restaurant.
  The African-American man, Alton Spann, is from Cook County in northeastern Illinois and lives with his mother and stepfather on weekdays. Spann is a “reciprocal offender” who was on parole at the time of the incident and has a record of serious injury, vehicle robbery and evading police enforcement.
  When I looked up the information, I saw a photo of Spann and the victim, Zheng Shaoxiong. Spann’s photo is from the Chicago Police Department and should have been taken at the police station after his arrest. In the photo, Spann is seen wearing a black hoodie with short, neat hair and a string of letters above his left eyebrow – “Morcha” – a word of Indian origin that means “anti-government demonstration”. In front of the camera, he has drooping eyebrows, empty eyes looking straight ahead, and a solid torso like an empty shell.
  Zheng Shaoxiong’s photos are in stark contrast. In the photo, Zheng Shaoxiong wears a fitted blue suit, white shirt, and blue pattern tie. His eyes are shining brightly, confident and firm.
  Now, the light has suddenly disappeared. A seemingly accidental encounter leads to a fatal outcome – two young men, one facing a felony and the other dying forever.
  From the perspective of the media, we often need a macro perspective. In addition to seeing the “evil” of individuals, we will also analyze the background of the formation and deterioration of these “evil”, to look at the inevitability behind the contingency, to explore the future to avoid sadness The path of reoccurrence. In this case, for example, what led Spann, who had just come of age, to this path? Of course, there are impacts from the general social environment, such as unequal opportunities, unbalanced development, and the widening gap between the rich and the poor brought about by the epidemic. This is also why after a shooting, communities are divided over solutions to safety issues, such as whether to send more police officers, or whether to put more money and resources into underserved communities and invest in social programs such as education, health care, and housing. This kind of analysis allows us to see more broadly and more rationally, but it also makes the pain more persistent, because we understand that the randomness of injury may still exist.
  Without investigation, I can’t break down exactly why Spann went astray. But the process of thinking about this question reminded me of a British documentary I recently watched, Life After Prison. A young man who had just been released told the camera about the life choices he was facing at the moment: “I have no money, no job, and I have to wait two or three weeks to get my job search funds”; but on the other hand, “shortcuts” are in sight. , “I just send a message on WhatsApp and I can get a car, start selling drugs, and make £150 a night.”
  The young man who had been “in and out” from prison was very candid, “I would never Looking back, I don’t know what I did or anything like that. No, it’s all bullshit…I totally understand what’s right and what’s wrong. But I made those choices.” Unfortunately, more people fall victim to these choices.
  During the interview, a parent of a UChicago undergraduate handed me an electronic file called “A Message of Love from the Chicago Family.” The document contains messages written by hundreds of parents of Chiba college students to Zheng Shaoxiong’s mother, in both English and Chinese. “Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.” wrote a parent named Kenny. These love and support are touching, but it takes the “care”, “prayer”, “love” and “strength” from many people to support a mother’s pain of losing her child.
  ”Life After Prison” also followed an old man who had just been released from prison. At 19, he was jailed for murder and served 32 years. In front of the camera, the old man tearfully recounted his reflection on “how to get there” and the regret of “having to carry that stain” for the rest of his life. At this moment, a barrage on the screen slowly floated past, “Murderers can tell their own stories, but victims don’t even have the chance to tell…”