The Latin Kings Speak.

Talk by a Latin King Leader March 28, 2002

Transcript - Ray
Transcribed on 1 Apr 2002

Below is a transcript of a talk that was given by a member of the Almighty Latin King and Queen Nation to a classroom of college students who were taking a class on the History of Chicago Gangs.

"Rey": So 1985 the dynamics of gangs in the city of Chicago were really really interesting because in reality as an organization a lot of them were only 5, 5 to maybe 8 years at the most being completely oriented somewhere. And what I mean by that is literature, by-laws, code of conduct, purpose, points, that type of thing. So people were still trying to feel each other out, trying to figure out what was going to work what way. Around that time the Folk Nation, (which is comprised of Latin Disciples, Spanish Cobras, Two Six, and a variety of other gangs) had a little problem between Latin Disciples and the Spanish Cobras and from there it’s been hell ever since. They fight amongst themselves. On the People side, you have what used to be Latin Kings, the Black Peacestones, Vice Lords, 4Corner Hustlers, Familia Stones which used to be PR Stones, and variety of other people. Now Latin Kings left the People Nation. Cause there could be People and there could be Folks but we’re gonna be Latin Kings. And the reason behind that, which is probably the smartest move that the organization did or pulled, was because the Vice Lords got into some trouble and it was mandatory that everybody under that flag had to ride with them and fight against whoever they were fighting against. So the Vice Lords lost somebody to the Gangster Disciples and we had nothing to do with it, we don’t even have Gangster Disciples around us, we had to go at it with them because of our nationship. So we decided to leave that and said you know what we’re losing guys based on you guys fucking up. And we ain’t doing it no more, and we left. And it was a hard move. Lots of people died for it. Lots of people purposely went to jail, to the penitentiary, caught a year maybe two years in the penitentiary, to make the transition. So that People understood that the Latin Kings will not ride under one umbrella. Okay? And since then we’re grown to maybe about double our size. Only because People have been able to see that.

Now. Some of you might think I’m full of shit and I don’t have a problem with that. We all have our opinions and we all have our perspective of life. If you choose not to listen and not to agree with what I’m saying, there isn’t a wrong with that. But remember, the only road to wisdom is by listening and by accepting what other people living. And there’s a lot of that going around right now because of September 11th. All of the sudden we’re interested in Islam, in Muslims, and we have to learn that tolerance, and this is somewhat of the same thing. Because we are a population that society doesn’t give a shit about. I could get shot in the middle of the street and if people turned around and said oh he’s a gang member, aw fuck him, he deserved it, he had it coming. We’ve chosen as a society as a whole to throw away hundreds of thousands of youth. Literally just throw em away. Because of an affiliation. Why do gangs exist? Well I was on the internent last night, and I, you know, I went to Ask see what they told me right. So I get all this stuff you know and when I look at it there’s quite a few sites – government sites and national organization sites that say that the gangs started in the 1980’s. Mid 70’s, 80’s. The worst gang violence that took place in this country was in New York around the 1880’s, 1890’s. And it was against an Irish and Jewish gang. 100 people died. Men, women, children, police officers, everybody. Anybody that got caught in Central Park that day died. That was the worst case of gang violence that has ever been reported in this country. So when you think about that you’re like man, this was before the turn of the century, how much further back does it really go. And the basis of gangs is the basis of poverty and racism. When you have poverty and racism, inequality, lack of a stable economic base in the community, you’re gonna have gangs whether you like it or not. Nowadays they just so happen to be black and latinos. Why? Because we’re the ones that have the lack of economics in our community. Some people say you know pull yourself up by your own bootstraps right and we always say, well what if we don’t got boots. Then what? You know. And there’s never a response to that. I’m not here to justify anything that has happened because yeah there are bad people in these gangs. There are people that kill, there are people that sell drugs, that’s without a doubt. I always tell my guys and guys from other organizations. If you get caught for doing something, don’t come asking for help unless they’re trying to add on some shit to you. If you got caught for murder, do the time man. There’s nothing I can do about that. What do you want me to do? Pull out 30, 40000 dollars and get you off the hook? You got caught with the guns in your hand and they can verify that you did it, you did it, what you want me to do? Some guys will say, no no you gotta get me out, at least help em get out of the country, go somewhere, do something. You know. That does happen and I’m not gonna deny it but guess what? It happens in the police department and it happens in our government. Local, state, county, federal government. Same thing happens. It’s just that we’re looked upon as the bad people because when you walk outside your house you see it. You can’t walk into a police station and see that. You can’t walk into the Capitol. It’s all done behind closed doors. Okay? A lot of the gang leaders that exist now are very aware of all the bullshit that’s going on. Are you guys, how many people know what Cointelpro is? Very very important in the history of gangs – counter intelligence that’s what that is. What they did in Latin America. Well here they made it smaller and brought it into the inner cities, to attack the Black Panther party, to attack Young Lords and a variety of other organizations out there, even the Brown Berets. And it’s a conspiracy and I know people that are leery about conspiracy theories.

Yeah. And it’s something that just had it’s rebirth at September 11th you know. The anti-terrorism law is a horrible horrible law. I mean, I understand what they’re trying to do, how they are trying to look at people, but you know, it’s 300, like 375 pages long. In page 212 you’ll find something that you’re like holy shit you’re kidding. In Vieques, do people know Vieques, Puerto Rico, the whole thing about you know the bombing and the shelling over there. Well within that document they’re saying that if somebody we’re to grab a pair of scissors and snip that bomb wire from the US military base, they will consider that an act of terrorism. Okay. Why is it that people that are trying to fight for survival are being targeted as terrorists and bad people?
Definitions for gangs. Anybody have a dictionary in here by chance? No? Okay. Cause the last one I found was from 1990. In 1959, Webster’s New World Dictionary, college edition, says gangs: group of people associated together in some way specifically stating, a group of workers directed by a foreman, b. an organized group of criminals, c. a squad of convicts at work, d. a group of children or youth from the same neighborhood banded together for social reasons. Okay, that’s 1959. World Book Encyclopedia, 1980 edition. Gang: it was kind of long so I just want to get at a paragraph. Refers to an informal organized group of persons. It usually applies to groups of men or boys who perform acts that are either against the law or on the borderline. Certain kind of gangs exist in the United States, especially in large cities. Then at the end of it, it says see also Al Capone and John Dillinger. Webster’s New World Dictionary again 1990. New definition was just cut. Says gangs: a group of people working or acting together. Specifically a group of criminals or juvenille delinquents. That’s it. From 1959 to 1990, that definition went like this. From a much longer paragraph to one sentence: bam. Why is that? Why is it that in 1980, especially 1980, the definition changed? Here in the United States we had the FALN that came up – the Puerto Rican Liberation – I forget what FALN stands for. ____ ____ ____ something. And there is a lot of bonds being formed at that time.

The Latin Kings were associates of the FALN to some extent. As soon as they started talking about bombings, then I just, I bombed us out at 315 ___. Cause I was talking here, and I said man why did the FALN and the Latin Kings have animosity against each other. I made a few phone calls, cause this was bothering me and I found out. It was because when the FALN said hey we got these bombs and we want to do something, Latin Kings said no thank you and they backed away. And this brother there I was talking to he was like 40 years old, he said the reason we pulled away was because the Latin Kings would not exist today if we took part in it. Which is true. Cause if you look at the people from the FALN, Clinton before he left office, released about 11 of them you know. And it’s true the FALN does not exist today. You know it exists in intellectual minds but it does not exist as an organization because of Cointtelpro, because of the Red Squad. Does anybody know what the Red Squad is? Red Squad. <chuckle> No, well. The Red Squad was a group of Chicago Police Officers and FBI agents and their sole purpose was to infiltrate and corrupt organizations. That’s how Fred Hampton died, because of the Red Squad. That’s why the Young Lords got disbanded because of the Red Squad. You see Chicago’s not only the School of Architecture and the School of Organizing but also the School of Corruption. That’s the one part that nobody wants to talk about. Mayor Richard J Daley, I call him Papa Daley for fun. He was part of an Irish gang growing up. And he learned politics in the City of Chicago could only be handled one way – with intimidation. That’s the only way politics are gonna succeed. Till today. Bill Clinton when he ran for office, and when Al Gore was talking about running for office. Who do you think they called first? The Sonny, Richard M Daley, hey you know kind of like asking what they should do, and what do you think? The vice president of the United States and the President of the United States had to call the Mayor of the city of Chicago to ask. Why? Because in this city a lot of things happen that you guys don’t know about. Why do I know about it? Because gangs play a part in it. We have somebody that’s running for governor for this state on the Democratic setting. He so happens to be the son-in-law of an alderman on the northwest side of Chicago. Well that alderman is very deeply involved with the Latin Disciples. That’s the only reason this governor, democratic nominee governor, has made it to where he’s landed. Because he’s had unlimited funds by the street and drug dealers supplying that money, okay? The problem I have with that is that, if you put your face on TV and talk shit and go back and do this, then you know what you’re part of this gang and whatever happens to you oh fucking well.

Cause I’ll tell you something, all of us on this side of the fence, we want shit to stop. We wish we didn’t have to go through what we had to go through. We tired of burying people. Is it in our hands? No it’s not. Because we’ve seen and we’ve done it many times. We reduce the violence and we reduce all the graffitti and when we stop everything and we stop drug dealers from selling, we still go to jail. It continues to happen. Why? Because of the Red Squad. The Red Squad supposedly officially ended in 1976, it came out in the newspaper. You know everybody said hey it’s over it’s not happening again. In 1996 it came out in the newspaper in the Chicago Tribune that it really ended in 1983. Then another report came out not too long ago saying well we think it still might be active but in a minimal way. I have at least 3 or 4 close relatives, two of them that are in jail for no reason. I mean it’s not, they’re not there because they did something but because they were set up

. One guy in particular, he was out, been in jail for 20 some odd years. I think he did his time. And he told me, he said Rey, I do not want to be around anybody on any bullshit. I don’t want to deal with anything. I just want to get a job, do my thing, and go home. Cause I can’t violate my parole anymore. He was doing pretty good for about 6 months. Got a job at a shop. Working hard. Working 10 12 hours a day. The FBI in, they don’t want gang leaders out on the street, the mythical ones at least. You know they don’t want them out there because they’re afraid that we’re going to be glorifying him like him personally like wow he can do a lot of things. So it’s the whole chopping the head off. So what did the FBI do? They broke into this shop in the middle of the night, planted about 15 bricks of cocaine, broke out of the place, sat on the place until the morning came. Morning came and he’s walking in and it so happened the guy that they’re using as an informant and now he’s travelling the country as an informaant, getting a lot of people in trouble, decides to cool by this guy’s house and say, hey I was just driving, you want a ride to work? He didn’t think anything of it. Hey now bro let’s go it’s all right. You want some coffee? Yeah sure. They walk in and they sit down. Two seconds later, hey got you! Okay for what? Well you just sit right there. FBI did it’s run through the little maze. They get to the back and say oh look at this cocaine! You’re in trouble mister. Trouble for what? For attempted distribution of __ product, controlled substance. What are you talking about? They’re like oh don’t play stupid we know you placed that back there. Placed what? So they took him over there, made him lift the rag or whatever that was over it, and said you see? He showed us where it was at. They wanted to give him life. For nothing. Luckily enough the federal defender, public defender, knew it was bullshit because he had noticed that when they brought out the drugs, he realized it was tagged by the DEA. <laughter> he didn’t say anything. He went back and your honor you know I want the prosecution to talk a little bit more about these drugs and how they were confiscated. Well the Federal Buerau of Investigation and some Chicago Police Officers blah blah. Okay okay. Was the DEA involved at any time? No why? You know the FBI took care of it. So it never left your hands? Never. So why does it say DEA, a sticker that says DEA behind this? Uhhh…. So happened that there was a drug lord down about maybe three or four other courtrooms down that they were having a case where the drug that the DEA caught him with and they were just borrowing it right out for a minute. Killed two birds with one stone. You know. You tell me if you wouldn’t be pissed off. Going to jail. After you just finished doing 25 years. Tell me you’re not. And when people find out people get more upset. you walk into a community and there is nothing in these communities.

There’s, if you look at Humboldt Park, you’ve got two side ends divided by Sacramento, Sacramento and Humboldt Boulevard. The east side of Humboldt Park is primarily Latin Folks, Latin Disciples, the Spanish Cobras, Dragons, Gents, and I don’t know who else is over there. They all grew up, same bush there. On the west side of it, it’s us, all Latin Kings. When people talk about west Humboldt Park and they’ll show you map and they’ll say oh the west Humboldt Park area, they’ll skip over the Latin Kings territory, which is Kedzie, between Kedzie and Central Park, Grand and Arlington St. And they’ll skip over it and they’ll say over here in west Humboldt Park, well what are we? You know? In that area you cannot build anything that requires a building permit without alderman Billy Ocasio signing off on it personally. Why did he do that? Because a lot of the older guys that were trying to get out of all this bullshit were trying to open up businesses. Legitimate businesses. Was it drug money? Yeah. So fucking what? So’s Merchandise Mart. Merchandise Mart was built on the Kennedy’s money from bootlegging. That’s why the Merchandise Mart lives. But does anybody say anything no because now we can drink liquor and all get drunk and be happy about it. So while these guys were trying to build something. Billy Ocasio and Luis Guttierez noticed that. And mind you the reason they don’t like us is because one of them used to be a Latin Disciple and the other one used to be a Gent. So they used to be Folks and they still have animosity against Latin Kings years and years after. But when they need to get elected who do they come to? They come to the Latin Kings because they need this little area to vote from. We help em out in exchange for jobs. And those are the back street politics that are played in this city. Everywhere. Right now I can guarantee, I could almost put my life on it that there’s some politician or commissioner somewhere making a deal that if everybody found out about it, it’d be over. It’d be the end of their career. Right now as we speak. And at the same time there might be someone getting shot, stabbed, jumped or involved in a gang fight. How is it that all this exists? Why is it that it clearly exists? And I go back to talking about the racism and the poverty within this city. It’s a plan that was developed. They thought about it and they said how are we gonna get people, we gotta migrate people out of certain areas, and that helped create a lot of the situation that exists today.

The Latin Kings were a small organization when they first started and there were nothing but street gangs in the city of Chicago in the 1950’s but people only concentrate about the blacks and the Latinos because it was during the civil rights movement and that’s the focus. But at the same time there were a lot of Polish gangs, and Jewish gangs. A variety, a variety of gangs all over the city. The difference is that the Caucasian groups of the gangs were already set on the track of being politicians, commissioners, police officers and everything. We were set on a track of poverty. We’re not gonna get all this shit. The Humboldt Park community used to be a very strong and thriving Jewish community. It had maybe about 75 Jewish temples in the Humboldt Park community. You walk into Humboldt Park now and you won’t find one at all. Because when the Latinos were moved out of Lincoln Park into Humboldt Park the Jewish community so whoa hang on, what the fuck just happened. You know? The African Americans were trailing right behind us, a little bit further south. Jewish community said fuck this, knock the buildings down, we’re leaving. And they left. 50000 people left in one year alone and started Sagonash Village up on the north side where it’s Bill Daley lives. That’s Peterson and roughly between Pulaski and Cicero. So they and that community had already existed but they came and they said let’s build. You know? So the economics were yanked out of this community. Grocery stores, gas stations, everything you need to live on a daily basis was yanked. Imagine living in a neighborhood where you can’t buy groceries. Jump in the car, drive, like you in the suburbs. When you are in the dead center of the city. And then at that which grocery store you had to go to. You couldn’t just walk into a Dominck’s and say. And by the way Dominick’s is a franchise of the Italian mafia in case y’all didn’t know. So the next time you shop there why do you think it’s called Dominick’s? Okay. <laughter> you couldn’t walk into Dominick’s. you black you latino you can’t walk into it. Jewel maybe. CertaSavers fuck, here’s the red carpet come on in. Aldy come on in. you know. So when you put all these things together you create an environment that just breeds a lot of hatred and a lot of anger and that’s where we’re at today. You’ve got a bunch of pissed off people that don’t appreciate what’s been done to them. Can we take responsibility for what we do? Of course. I make them do it every day. I take responsibility for the dumb shit that I do. Cause I sometimes get off the wagon and say man fuck him, you know? <laughter> I don’t try to kill nobody. But I stop halfway and say you know I can’t hurt that brother. I can’t. you know I can’t. cause then I’m going against what I’m about. But the feeling and the anger’s still there. Within myself. What’s the process of moving out of this? That’s something this country’s not willing to do. Plain and simple. They’re not willing to do it. We’re all Americans at September 11th . And I’ve been told don’t apply here. (can’t hear) so that’s where I’m at. Now they’re denying me an income. Because I’m Latin King. Because I speak my mind.

The spokesperson for the White House, I forget it, Erie… Liesher. He said after Bill Mahre made his comments, I think we both heard what Bill Mahre was kind of saying in October. This guy said well you know Americans now need to watch what they say and what they do because we don’t have time for this. So we’ve gone to the good old US of A into what American policy hates. Cuba, China, Soviet Union, the old Soviet Union, we become that, we become a dictatorship out in the open. We’ve always know it existed, they just bluntly said something about it now. Why can’t we fix this? It’s because there’s a lot of issues out on the table. I’d rather live in Israel to tell you the truth. Because they’re fighting based on some kind of principle that two people really strongly feel about. That’s worth a fight. Do I agree with what’s going on? Hell no. but there is a solid basis of principle that they’re fighting about. That’s worthy. Here, it’s based on money. That’s not worthy. That’s not even a principle. And that’s where we find ourselves sitting. And where gangs exist, and you probablly y’all didn’t expect to hear all this, but gangs exist because we desire them to exist. We need them to be there. To unload our frustrations, to unload our angers, to make ourselves feel good. And when you get that AOL and Microsoft little cd’s in the mail, who do you think packaged them? Prisoners. All over the country. Cause Bill Gates said one day, he said you know, it’d be great to send every home in America a cd. That’s a fucking great idea. And they looked at the numbers they said eh we can’t. we can’t build a plant just to send cd’s out. And what, and hopefully they’ll sign on. Federal government said you know we only have to pay our prisoners 4 cents on the hour, you build the plant we’ll provide the workers. Oh okay. So every time you grab it just know that it’s been in the hands of a convicted criminal. Okay? And that’s how this country works and that’s our policy. Do I love this country yes. Do I benefit from it? Every single day. But I’m willing to sacrifice to make a change and help it grow. Do I pledge of allegience? No I will not. Will I fight for this country? Not unless we’re invaded. Because my house ain’t getting blown up by nobody. <laughter> but the policies that this country has decided to take on does not reflect it’s foreign policy. It’s foreign policy is very strict against other countries. You can’t do this, you can’t do that, you need to provide people this and close that shit down. But when you look inside everything they’re criticizing everybody about exists. So they’re foreign policy does not reflect their foreign policy at all. And that needs to happen in order for a country to remain successful. What’s the problem with China and the old Soviet Union? Is they would say fuck you and fuck you. They tell their own people and the people outside, you got a problem with me? It’s my country. You want to fight for it? Let’s go. Let’s do this. And that was too bloody. People couldn’t deal with it. They said whoa. It’s a little crazy, you know. And there’s an extremity of things, there’s an extremity on both sides. And Clinton had said we want a color blind society. That’s the biggest racist comment you could ever make as a white person. Cause man you just removed yourself from being responsible of being a racist of doing things against certain people because of their nationality, their creed, their sex orientation, whatever. Rather you want a colorful society so that we may benefit from every color. Wouldn’t that be better? Wouldn’t it be better if we could all just say man let’s talk about something else. Let’s talk about how we’re gonna get our degrees, move on and create a business that’s gonna help the community that’s gonna help people evolve. Around the world. That’d be great. I’d love it. But we can’t, people’s just too stuck on our ignorance when we deal with ourselves in general. You know. In the 1960’s mayor Daley, Papa Daley, said you know let’s get ready for the 21st century. So he got a bunch of new people together, business men, and said let’s create a plan, let’s call it plan 21. We’re gonna make Chicago number 1 by the 21st century. I may not be there with you but somebody will. And sure enough. It was a whole move to gentrification. Moving people out of Lincoln Park. Now I’d be pissed of if I could go to Lincoln Park and move two blocks away. Make me move into Humboldt Park. Got kicked out. Into Humboldt Park. Lincoln Park was the first phase. Why do you think… I don’t know if you guys watch PBS but they’ve got all these shows on Chicago and older Chicago and all these buildings that they tore down and everything. That was part of the plan. Was to create an enormous skyline for Chicago at the lakefront so that the world could just ah what a beautiful city. And it started from there in at Lincoln Park and it spread out. And basically it’s just a half circle around the downtown area. You got here, you got Edgewater up here and you’ve got Bronzeville down here. And everything in that circle has been gentrified. Why a half circle? Well because if any of you’s ever been to Paris or are planning on going to Paris, all the rich people live here and as you do this it gets poorer and poorer, lot poorer. And on the outskirts of Paris you’ll find all the housing projects, all the worst of the worst as they say and that’s the concept that this city’s run on. Now they have a new group that Richey Boy, that’s my pet, he hates it. He doesn’t appreciate it, in case you’re wondering. He said okay well let’s create a plan to move through the millennium and now there’s a group. I don’t know the Chicago Millennium or Millennium Project something like that. But they have every company you can think of involved in this and it’s to improve Chicago for the future. So I know that by the time I’m in my 50’s and 60’s I’m gonna be still fighting the same fight. Because there’s gonna be more gentrification and more problems, more poverty, more lack of opportunity in the city, particularly in the inner city. And it’s a continuing fight. Do I mind? No. I like it. I enjoy. Cause I’ve come to understand that Chicago represents two things. It represents corrupt politics or political ethics, and it’s always been a gang __ ___. If you can’t deal with that. Get out. Cause you’re gonna have to deal with it at one point or another. Chicago Police Department they’re little headbands, the black and white, you know it looks like little Taxi, they all look like little taxi cabs. Why do you think that exists? Does anybody know what’s the significance of that? Why you know why would you put a checkerboard around your hat? No? Nobody? It’s an old insignia of an Irish gang back in Ireland. That was their insignia and they adapted it. They adapted it here in Chicago cause there’s a large Irish population in the City of Chicago. That’s why we’re very close with the Kennedy’s and a lot of certain mob boss figures out there. They used to be a… and it was because of that. So they said hey nobody knows. Except us. We know. We know what the insignia means so. Let’s unify under that. And they did and it still exists. And it’s an outrage. That’s why we all insist you’re a bunch of gang bangers too, fuck you. Cause it’s the truth. And they know about it. You think anyone’s gonna say anything about it? Nobody’s gonna say one word about it. Because now it’s become history. It’s not a gang issue anymore. It’s history. But what type of history? It’s a very very very violent history. You don’t have half the shit happen today that used to happen back then. Back then boy, I wouldn’t have wanted to live back in those times. Turn of the century, city of Chicago, it was horrible. Just walk by, oh shit a dead body man. You don’t have that happening nowadays. You have stuff that happens where kids get shot, people in general just gets shot and it’s a horrible thing. No one should be walking on the street and get hit by a stray bullet, I agree. And you know if you want to call em ethics or not. We always tell the guys, you gonna go shoot somebody you make sure you shoot that mother fucker. Kill him that way. When you find out that bullet went and hit somebody else, I’m coming after you. I’ll be done. And that’s our justice. Does it justify anything? No it doesn’t. Am I unique in my perspective within the organization? Yes. Are there many that think the way I think? No. but because I do this, they know, you know. I always call em hey I’m going to UIC I’m gonna do something. K, is there somebody in the room? They might be affiliated or friends of, you know. The other day there is this guy this and that, so I’m kind of covering my ass by making that phone call. And I got to. And they know it. And they was like man Rey, man let him know, let him know how it is. You know. And that’s what I’m trying to do. I’m trying to educate you. I’ve lost job opportunities, I’ve lost friends, a lot of things for doing this. Cause down the road eventually maybe some of you and I will attract in some way or another. You know we might bump into each other at a club. I’d like to see your reaction then. <laughter> we might be at a seminar, you know. We might end up working for the same company you never know. And you’ll have a heads up of what I’m about. And you’ll see me quiet, I won’t say anything while I’m at work, yeah I’m okay that’s cool. Hey you think you can handle this gang problem. I’m gonna try. I’ll try like a mother fucker. Come on give me the phone number, I’ll take care of it, you know. And it’s a difficult thing to do but I’m showing you that I have nothing to hide. Have I shot at people? Yes. Have I ever killed anybody? No. That I know for a fact. I never killed anybody. Cause when I usually shot at people that just did it to scare em. You know here’s a little nick to remember, don’t fuck with me. And I’m not into killing people. There’s no point in it. It doesn’t resolve anything. I became really good friends with the leader of the Spanish Cobras to the point that I was showing up at his house. Guide me through a Spanish Cobra neighborhood. Get there, draped in black and gold, baseball cap all the way to the left and everybody’s like who’s this fucking guy? I got this jogging suit from Puma and mind you these corporations they play on the whole thing. Cause why did Puma have to come out with only black and gold like a work out suit and right here on the left side it said Puma King. And I’m like hey it’s a nice little <laughter> so I walk into their neighborhood like this and they’re freaking out. And one of them will say I bet you he’s a King lover, he’s a King Man, he’s walking up in here. And what’s up Folks? ______ Man but I ain’t Folks. But I’ll shake his hand. You’ll be like uh huh. We’re like one, okay we’re waiting for you to say something else. What do you want me to tell you? Something that you already know that I’m a Latin King. Ah man, get you out of here man. You know they get frustrated and then they see their chief, the main guy for the whole organization what’s up? Have a seat, have my seat. All right cool man, so what’s going down? So what’s going on? I just came to shoot the shit. Twenty Spanish Cobras on the doorstep all looking at me like, and I know what they’re thinking, catch this mother fucker in a mall or something. Catch him out on the street I’m gonna have my way with him and oh well. And it hasn’t now. And I bumped into some of them out in the street festivals. And everything they’ll look at me they’ll be like what’s up bro? And keep walking. Why? Because I’m showing them respect. I show them respect saying I am who I am, accept me for who I am. We protected their founder all over this country. Wherever he has touched down on there’ve been Latin Kings, we’ve said guard that mother fucker. Make sure nothing happens to him. Treat him as a King. Why? Because he and a high ranking member of The Latin Kings became really good friends at Stateville Pennitentiary. Or whenever that King goes anywhere around the country and there’s Spanish Cobras, they say hey protect that nigger like he’s a Spanish Cobra. People get pissed off but that’s our way of dealing with each other. And it’s a very unique relationship and it’s a hard thing to maintain. Because once the police found out that we were like buddy buddy I mean we were like having Sunday dinners going taking each other out, going to the movies. You know so we could talk and mingle and try to work issues out. Cause we had to build our relationship, we had to build that relationship in order for peace to come out at that end. Once the police found out that was going on it took em but a second to put an informant among us and had somebody shot. It took them a second. Now we’re kinda like. <whisper> hey brother. I’ll let you know what. We gotta work our issues out. They gotta work their issues out. Sometimes I got, you know, I got paged by the FBI once cause I had called somebody and I said yo anytime you need me do this and put this code right behind it. Soon as I hung up, get in my car, driving, beepers going off, oh shit already? What happened? I pulled over but it’s a 312 area, 312 411 1333 I think is the FBI switchboard. And I memorized it so that when I see that number I can be like fuck you. And I call back and they’re like, and the guy on the phone’s laughing “FBI” and I could see all of them standing around the phone ‘he called back that, he called back really quick’. And I said man somebody paged me from there. You know and I’m thinking it could be one of my guys that went down there and they let em call me or they’re just fucking with me. But I want to show them that I really don’t care. I’ll call you back. What? They said hold on real quick. Gets back on the line. I said you need to hurry up cause my 59 seconds are up. I’m letting them know how long it takes for them to track phone lines find out where I’m at. I said you know what I’ll tell you where I’m at. I’m at the corner of this and this okay. What do you want? Have you ever cooperated with the Federal Bureau.. I said mother fucker no. No. He trying me on tape to say something you know and I ain’t playing that game. I’ve been pulled over. I’ve been showed pictures. Why you doing this? Why you doing that? I haven’t spent a day in jail. Because they know that I’m not any bullshit. I understand the politics of this city very well. You gonna get in some shit. Deal with it, you better deal with it. And if you can’t, run. And I’m talking about gangs, politics, police, everything, this whole city operates. Boy I tell you if you guys could see half the shit I’ve seen you wouldn’t believe it and you’d be like nah you know. You’d share some of my opinions about certain things. And it’s a tough thing to do but since they know that I can’t maneuver from there and I’m not afraid to come here and tell you, they don’t know what to do with me. I had an FBI agent of September 9th of last year pulled me over on the expressway. What? And he told me, I don’t know. Jack if you don’t fucking know then why you pulling me over. I’m like shit, what? I’m late. You gotta go to your meeting right? I said yeah mother fucker you wanna escort me to it? What, what do you want? You know you’re just giving us a headache. I’m like why cause you’re sitting like a fucking idiot in the van down the street from my crib? Listen, oh say something say something. Taking pictures in the cold in the hot sun, come on. Let me see a badge let me see something. And nothing and they’re, and I, it’s not my fault your boss is a fucking idiot. You’re watching nobody. I’m Mr. Nobody to you. Cause I’m not involved in anything. You want me you’re gonna have to come after all of us. And you don’t got the balls to do it. Cause they know and I’ve told this to a lot of people in groups that I shouldn’t have said it, with police officers present, I said y’all a bunch of little cowards because if it came down to it that it was between you and me you know you’d lose because I will doctor my ___ you gonna dive for that badge, nope. I bet you if I told you I want to kill you because of that badge you gonna be like… you really want to die too? here’s my billy club. You’re gone.

Cause you ain’t willing to die for it. And it’s not because I’m willing to die for a gang but because I’m willing to die for the purpose of progress to improve my people’s situation, other people’s situation and for the betterment of our community. We lost that years ago because of Cointelpro, because of the Red Squad. Once you catch a virus it’s hard to kick. And a lot of these guys are an continue to be involved in the drug trade. And sometimes I laugh when I see a, and I do, I really try to watch CrimeWatch as much as possible to see if I know anybody on there and they did a reverse sting on somebody and I started laughing because these fuckers must have heard what I said. Cause we had a conference with all the major gang leaders in the city of Chicago, beginning of last year. We’re all talking this and that and they say all right Rey what you got to say? Hey you all read the newspaper. There was a sting that they did on the west side early last year. And they were videotaping the Gangster Disciples or 4Corner Hustlers one of the two, selling drugs, selling drugs, selling drugs, they ended up ___, ___, all these and I’m like… I’m watching this report and I’m like so maybe if you brought in the smoke you’ll catch the fucking ___ we’re the mother fuckers down the street you know. No, no. we’re looking at the drug dealer, we’ll get them first. They’re not a concern. Well what so happened was that they did, they had another camera that they didn’t show to the public catching the license plates and they were running the plates to see who it belonged to. Oh shit it’s a bunch of people in this neighborhood. You can’t arrest people from DesPlains. You know they’re a bunch of rich white folk that come out here to get their heroin. So what do we do? They did nothing about it. They sent them letters in the mail, disguised, City of Chicago Department of Events or something, confidential. They open it it says at this day at this time we noticed that your vehicle was driving through the west side of Chicago a very drug infested neighborhood that we’re aware of and we assume that you’re aware also that we have you on tape buying narcotics. We would appreciate it if you would not frequent this neighborhood for these purposes anymore. Thank you sincerely so and so the Chicago Police Department. But everybody else get their ass in jail. 30, 30, everybody gets 30 pieces in this fucking room. 30 piece, 30 years. And I was, I’m on the phone talking to all the guys. Y’all saw that shit. Well you motherfuckers and we’re all bitching about it. So we said make sure that everybody understands that it’s a one side deal so you know tell everybody get off the fucking street for now. So some people listened others didn’t. well shit, late last year they did a reverse sting on the buyers. They grabbed a house that was frequented a lot. They took the drug dealers out, the cops stood out in front. Yo. They drive up, it’d be like car, ___ ___, walk up, grab Chicago Police you’re under arrest. I’m like these fuckers heard our conversation. That’s right. They did, didn’t they, I don’t know. But it’s a move that they do to show us, you know, oh you know, we can play the game. We know what you about. And it’s cool. I don’t have a problem with it, I’m glad. Cause you, I mean, you should have seen the expressions on these people. What? Me? Like they were doing nothing wrong. Mother fucker get your ass in the house. And people were fighting like no no what are you talking about I don’t know what you’re talking. You don’t know? What’s that bag of heroin in your hand? It’s not mine you gave it me. You know. So it’s that type of thing and we see it all the time. You know. Gangs see all the filth that this society throws out. Sometimes I tell em it’s like we’re all in the alley watching everybody toss the garbage out into the alley through the windows, knowing very well that the city doesn’t appreciate it. And they walk out the front doors of their house and these fucking people throwing garbage out their windows and they taking part in it. Any time you find yourself in a situation with gangs, you gonna do a report on it, you gonna talk about it, you have to go from a to z and see what’s behind it and see what’s behind that, because the reality is, is that we’re not a bunch of disorganized kids out on the corner selling drugs. I got here on the train that’s why I was here late. So I don’t have the Beamer and I’m not this great big gang leader.. If I was shit. I wouldn’t be talking to you all. I’d be somewhere warm. <laughter> screw this. But I’m not. I’m not about that. And a lot of the guys. I did an estimate of how much this one community had made in over 30 years. Cause I said how long y’all been drug dealing here? 30 years. All right. 30 years, let’s say times 100 a day? Yeah a 100 bags a day, okay cool. Did the math real quick. I forget the exact number but when I told them I think it was like 12 million dollars in the last 30 years. 12 million dollars? 12 million dollars in your hands dealing with that shit. Driving that putt putt ___ car. You want happy you want ___ . and it’s funny and I make fun of it with them to help them understand and come to the realization of what are we doing. He’s right. 12 million dollars and we surrendered. We should be pissed off. And it’s a lack of understanding a lack of education and a lack of someone just being there saying you can be somebody. you know these guys haven’t been told that they could step out the box. I’m sure most of you know what I’m talking about. Meaning get out of the box or inside of the box. No they haven’t been told. Get the fuck out of here, it’s dark, get out, do something. And they don’t know that because they haven’t been told they haven’t been shown that they can actually have that opportunity. It might seem ridiculous but it’s true. It’s absolutely true. It’s like going to one of the smaller islands on Fiji where people still, you know, they’re still very native to their dress and everything, then you tell them, you see this this thing right here. If you hold on to this it will beep one of these days and someone will call you. Get the fuck out of here, yeah right. You’re not gonna convince them to buy a beeper cause they don’t know. They haven’t been told. Same thing with these communities. They haven’t been told that thye could move ahead in life because every time they’ve tried they’ve been told to get back. Get back and get further back and that’s the barrrier. It’s to show them. I took a guy to New York maybe about 3 years ago, 1st time he’s ever left the city of Chicago and he was like 30 some years old. Cause he’s never had the resources ___ ___. He got to New York and he’s like boy it’s a lot bigger than any pictures. Today he’s a different man. He’s a different man. He’s going to school. It took a trip to New York for him to realize that there’s more to life than just Humboldt Park. He’s going to school he’s going to college, he’s moving ahead. But he’s not gonna get anywhere he can’t. you know and that’s important. We always tell people that you go to school cause you got to get out of this neighborhood. Why you got to leave the neighborhood? To succeed. You should be able to succeed in your own home right? It’s like I give you a house, or better yet a car, right? What kind of car is it? A Ferrari. Imagine I give you a Ferrari, gassed up, ___ up, plant a girl next to you but I don’t give you the fucking keys. It’s only ___ you’re like oh god why won’t it turn on? You know what I’m saying? And it’s the same concept. We have the school great but the fucking books. You know? And that’s the reality of that. I went through that period when I had to share my books. I don’t know how many of you have gone through that before also but it’s kind of like you know sitting there waiting okay it’s my turn to read. Oh okay now it’s your turn. It’s frustrating. I got moved out of my neighborhood schools to a north side school which was predominantly white because we were told that we would have better services. Well I went from a 4th grade classroom to a 4th grade and because an asian girl transferred in they moved me out of that class. There was no seat available. When she walked in the teacher’s like we don’t have a seat. And I was like boy she burned up. Teacher does this <snap> get up. Me? Yeah get your stuff, clean out your desk. I’m like man what did I do? So I start cleaning my stuff and everybody around me just put their heads down and looked away and I’m like I’m being kicked out? What happened? And then she made everybody move back so this asian chick could sit in the front and I’m like… I imagine dumping, moving out my desk and dude in front of me is already sitting my seat and I’m like I’ll see you after class. I walked to the end of the class and I’m holding onto my books and my book bag and I’m like okay where am I getting to sit and I asked her, I forget what her name was, where am I going to sit? Well we’ve had a change of plans. Walk outside go down the hallway, knocks on the door, Jacklyn, we have this young man here that’s gonna be in your classroom you know. Oh yeah, I know. I walk in and it’s 4th 5th 6th grade all in one classroom. Son of a bitch. Still got the back seat. You know. And that was a really tough period. From there I refused to learn. Refuse to learn. Fuck you. I ain’t doing my homework I ain’t doing shit. Do I suffer from reprecussions from that period, of course. Of course I did. And I still kind of refuse to go to college cause I don’t see a purpose in it. You have a purpose for it. I don’t. because I think I’ve lived enough <tape side end>
Not just murderers who are not just drug dealers, we are people, we are somebody’s son. We are somebody’s brother, we are somebody’s cousin, nephew, brother. And since I know I’m gonna stay on that track there’s nothing this fucking building and this institution can teach me. Nothing. There’s even a program that runs out of here and they can’t even do the work. They can’t do street intervention cause they’re like oh well we’ll give em a basketball; they’ll give us the guns. <laughter> yeah that’ll work. It worked in Uganda it should do the work here. Okay. And that’s their attitude. There’s nothing that they can teach me about what I want to do. They might help me be a little bit more articulate. Help me write a paper or something. Great. I’ll pick it up on the way. But in the meantime this is what I want to do. And it’s a difficult thing to do and to follow because ultimately what I’m asking people to do it stick your neck out or stick your chest out and take a bullet if it comes your way. Because the only way we’re gonna solve the issue of violence in this country is not by harming everybody and it’s not by putting everybody in jail but it’s for fighting for the person that’s next to you. Cause the whole purpose of going up a ladder is not to get up there and be hey! It’s nice from up here! It’s not. It’s to go up 2 steps and pull someone up, go up 2 and pull somebody up. That’s the process of going up a ladder, (can’t understand) is to help those that cannot help themselves. You pull whatever __. If you can’t do that, you’re not willing to hear what I’m trying to say, you can show me all the quantum physics you want don’t complain about it in the future. Cause it’s useless. It’s like walking around with a rock in your shoe. Saying oh it will, it’ll come out when I take my shoe off tonight before I go to bed. It’ll come out. You know. And if you never get home, you’re still walking around, don’t complain about it. You can stop and do something about it now. Don’t complain about it later on in the day. Say aw my feet are so sore I got this fucking rock in my shoe. You know. That’s your fault. Don’t complain about it. And that’s where we’re at now. And we’re, street organizations are trying to move ahead, be a little bit more positive on things. And it’s a hard thing to do cause now we have to convince the other kids of what’s happened to us and try, you know when we have this huge influence of hip hop, I don’t even call it hip hop just urban music. Where you got JZ and Master P and all these fucking idiots you know saying it’s all about the money. Bull shit. Half that shit that they show on TV ain’t even theirs. It’s all on lend you know. And that’s the reality of it. But these kids don’t see that they just see somebody damn not only does he got women around him. He got all types of jewerly, cars, money, all that. I’m going right there and they do it. And they do it all day every day. How do I compete against that you tell me? Well you know you’d be better off if you went to school, picked up a job at an urban camp and work your way up. Work my way up? Selling drugs at halfway places, (can’t understand) it’s a hard thing to compete with. Cause we’re competing against an American society of only the strong survive. And that having money people see as strength. And that’s what, you know, if I’m gonna survive I gotta go there. And in that process we lose people. And I’m telling you, anybody live in Brighton Park? Or work in Brighton Park? Okay. Brighton Park they had a community meeting – 900 people showed up. Oh that’s a lot, that’s great. What’d you do with those 900 folks? Well they came to complain about the gang problem in front of the school. Okay that’s a good issue. And? Well we told the police they have to do something about it. 900 people expect 2 armed individuals to rid the gang situation in front of a school. Don’t you think that’s kind of stupid? You can get 900 people together, concerned about 1 issue, you would think that you could get at least, 50 people out of that crowd to do something about it. To say you know what, I’m gonna stay after this I’m gonna find out who that kind Vomit is. Meet I know mother. Maybe we go to church together, maybe we work together. Maybe there’s a problem at home. No we want the guys go beat his ass, arrest him, and take him to jail for whatever. Disorderly conduct. That’s the regular charge for it. You can’t rely on that. Because then when things happen blame yourself. When that kid dies on the corner, blame yourself. I blame myself everyday when things happen. I get very upset. I’m like I should have been there I should have done this I should have done that. But I can’t save the world by myself. I need other people to say oh okay these are actually human beings they’re not from planet gang banger. You know. And we can’t give up on our kids. If we decide to do that then don’t waste your time. Don’t waste your time being a social worker or a police officer because it just frustrates the situation and I hate to think that I’m gonna have to get to some point where I’m gonna say all right guys arm yourself cause we going after the cops. And that would be a huge mess. I hope I don’t get into trouble for saying that. But that’s the reality of things. It gets to the points and we’re… kids just get frustrated and say fuck this. You know? You watch little kids long enough, you see that they get pissed off, what’s the first thing they do? They break their own toys usually. I slammed my phone. I’ve gone through so many cell phones. Quite a few times, arguing with gang leaders. Fuck you! You know. Damn shit why did I break own phone. 200 dollar phone. You know. And that’s our nature. We self destruct. We get to a point of frustration and we self destruct. You know. And we need to learn how to address that. I’m gonna end it there.