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    Posted April 7, 2014 by
    Chicago, Illinois
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
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    As a result of this winters brutal weather and increased snow days, some are predicting a dramatic increase in Chicago's murder rate this summer. Is there anything we can do to prevent this prediction from becoming a reality?


    Chicago, 2014-- Now-a-days summertime in Chicago has become synonymous with lakefront parties, backyard BBQ’s and high murder rates. In a recent analysis of Chicago’s crime rate, it was discovered that the highest number of murders within a given year occur during the months of May through September, with the largest spike in murders occurring in August (traditionally the hottest month of the summer). This trend has some Chicagoans worried that this year’s extended winter and cold temperatures will result in restlessness leading to higher murder rates when the warm weather breaks. One Chicagoan Facebook post read: “Once the weather breaks, Chicago’s gone be a dangerous place.” Another states: “One more week of snow and we’re gonna be calling Chicago Chi-raq this summer.” So what can we do to prevent these grim predictions from coming true?


    Toya Bell, speaker,author, and visionary, thinks she may have a remedy to this trend. She states, “we can’t just sit by idle as our children continue to be gun down every summer. I’ve found that people really want to help but they just don’t know how to. They are unaware that there have been similar projects done in the past that have been successful at lowering crime rates in large areas. I believe that Chicago is the greatest city in the world and if those other cities can do it, we can do it!”


    She is referring to a study conducted during the Israeli-Lebanese war of the early 1980s. In this project practitioners were trained in precise techniques of Transcendental Meditation (TM) to create peace in their bodies, rather than simply thinking about it in their minds or praying for it to occur. On specific days of the month, at specific times each day, these people were positioned within the war-torn areas of the Middle East. During the time that they were practicing TM, terrorist incidents, emergency room visits, and traffic accidents all declined.


    Bell is asking Chicagoans to join her in a vision for a safer summer in Chicago this year. She is inviting at least 27,000 people (1% of Chicago’s population) to meditate on peace during the months which historically has the highest crime rates (June-September). She has created a Facebook Group dedicated to sharing the vision of peace in Chicago. To join the group go to https://www.facebook.com/groups/SafeChicago2014/


    For media interviews or more information contact: Toya Bell at 630-537-0616

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