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This Week’s 10 Must-Read Stories

Inside a Chicago gang, and how solving murders could help prevent new ones

Chicago Cubs fans outside Wrigley Field celebrating the team’s National League Central Division title.   Photo: Brian Cassella/Chicago Tribune

1. Dispatches from the Rap Wars

A sociologist started interviewing Chicago kids about the police. Soon he was embedded in one of the city’s gangs. Forrest Stuart explains what happened next for Chicago magazine.

2. Solving Chicago’s Murders Could Prevent More

Witnesses and victims often don’t cooperate with police because they’re afraid of retaliation. If they knew they could get justice and protection, they would—and be safer as a result. Alex Kotlowitz makes the case for The New Yorker.

3. In a Chicago Suburb, a Syrian Family Adjusts to Its New American Life

Three years after fleeing, they’re in Aurora, learning English, learning how to adapt family recipes to 7-Eleven ingredients, and taking their kids to school. The Washington Post profiles the Haj Ali family.

4. A Chicago Shooting Survivor, But in Need of a Miracle

26-year-old mother Precious Land was shot on Memorial Day. She’s still comatose, while her mother attempts to get her and her children to the safety of the suburbs. The New York Times visits her family.

5. The 50 Best Bike Cities of 2016

How did Chicago make No. 1? To start with, by next year it will have the country’s first network of protected lanes downtown. Bicycling pays us our due.

6. Does Chicago Hot Dog King Have WWII Japanese Admiral’s Gold Tooth?

Dick Portillo, of the eponymous chain, has a gold tooth in his office, found in the wreckage of a plane in Papua New Guinea and purchased for $14,000 from the local clan. Matching it to the commander of the Japanese navy will be another adventure. The Tribune tells the tale.

7. Illinois State Pension Board Stops Trying to Beat the Market

Shifting from expensive, “active” hedge funds means less potential upside, but also less risk and less cost. The Wall Street Journal explains.

8. Lessons from Cities Trying to Be Better Buyers

Too many rules and too much bureacuracy means fewer vendors, which means higher prices. Chicago’s trying to change that. Governing covers its efforts.

9. Can Chicago’s Recent Plague of Violence Be Cured?

WBEZ’s veteran reporter Natalie Moore is skeptical. She talks to Marketplace.

10. A Few Charts That Show How Historic This Cubs Season Has Been

They haven’t led a division by this much in 110 years. Chicago runs the numbers.

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