Shots fired? Maybe not

Opinion: Editorials

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Trustee Deno Andrews is always in the middle of something. Last weekend as the administrator of the Northeast Oak Park Facebook group he watched as a full-on tizzy took place after one neighbor posted a comment that she had just heard gun shots in the neighborhood. 

It appears there were no gun shots at that corner, at that moment. Instead, as most of the posters cautioned, we're three weeks out from the 4th and we're going to hear plenty of fireworks. Hard to discern the difference.

As the weekend closed Andrews posted some new guidelines for the page. Here's the shorthand: Don't post that you are certain you just heard gunshots. Call 911. If Oak Park police confirm gun shots, then post it. 

In our gun-saturated country — and fireworks saturated, too — it is too easy to steal away a sense of safety and calm that is essential to a thriving neighborhood. Unconfirmed reports of gunfire spread like crazy on social media. And it doesn't do anything for our sense of well-being. 

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