“I don’t think anyone understands,” 53-year-old Linda Cunningham said through tears.
I was telling my co-worker who lost her son to gang violence that my son was severely egged due to wearing the wrong shirt color. I look at the nick blow his eye and I understand the scars you must carry.
“And she just got up and left. I think she was overcome with emotion but I needed comfort in that moment!”
For Cunningham and the rest of the Creekside Falls community, a scourge of so-called gang violence has distracted the normally peaceful, well-to-do suburb of Des Moines, Iowa. The violence isn’t like the gun violence that took over Chicago, Los Angeles, and other dangerous locales, though. This conflict is centered around a rivalry in Creekside High School between 11th graders who made up their own gangs after a May YG concert.
“I’m out here crippin’ hard, said 16-year-old Landon Alexander, who had his face covered by a blue bandana – but his student ID fully visible. Alexander said he’s a “4th floor crip,” referencing the 4th floor of his high school.
“It’s all a blue thing but we have problems with the 2nd floor crips sometimes,” he said while packing his locker with textbooks for his latin homework.
The high schoolers, who learn most of their customs from watching rap videos on YouTube, aren’t involved in any gun violence, and the worst offense to this point has been someone’s windshield being cracked, but the conflict has reached the highest office in the land. Donald Trump, who is said to have interest in building a golf course in Creekside Falls, pledged over $20 million in emergency funding to the town in order to give the kids “therapy and everything they need not to become bad hombres,” as he stated in a press conference.
“This is a gang epidemic. We can’t have this getting as serious as it did in LA,” says Lou Schmidt, Trump’s barber and special appointed “Gang interventionalist specialist.” An anonymous FBI source laughed heartily if asked if the bureau takes the town’s conflict serious, and questioned why the towns biker gangs haven’t been cracked down on.
“I’m sure in Los Angeles, it started out with a couple eggs being thrown in a school hallway, then suddenly thousands of young people are getting killed over drug corners,” said Schmidt. That won’t happen here,” said Schmidt while breaking up a food fight. “We’re in talks with 50 Cent to have him talk to the kids and show them the way.”
The Creek Springs epidemic has gotten National news coverage, overtaking news about Hurricane season and North Korea to grip America.
CNN personality Van Jones was recently seen bawling on the floor, calling the “putrid violence” a “self-inflicted white lash.”
He postponed his special about Chicago activists for a special entitled “what about white on white crime?,” to the chagrin of many.
Some critics are calling the Iowa “epidemic” overblown, such as Twitter user CruellaSeville who noted, “bullets fly in Chicago and Trump wants to send the military. Eggs fly in Iowa and he sends in grief counselors and social workers.”
“I blame the rap music,” says Cunningham. “I saw my son listening to this disgusting song called ‘pull up with a stick,’ while waving a ruler in the mirror.”
I said where are you going with that? Do you plan to hurt someone with that ruler? And he said, ‘you don’t understand’ and kicked me out of the room. I feel like I’m losing my son. We’re doing bad here.”