The streets of Chicago are awash in blood. More than 60 people were shot over Christmas weekend alone. The struggling city witnessed a record 735 homicides in 2016.
“We had a reprehensible amount of shootings and murders,” Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said this week. “Many,” he continued, “were deliberate and planned shootings by one gang against another. They were targeted knowing fully well that individuals would be at homes of family and friends celebrating the holidays. This was followed by several acts of retaliation.”
Chicago is in the grip of the sternest gun control laws in the country. Yet so many shootings occur that the city’s earned the apt nickname “Chiraq.”
During his campaign, President-elect Donald Trump often used Chicago as an example of a city suffering under failed liberal policies. Gun control doesn’t work. Poverty is the real driver of violence, and that won’t be fixed by a misguided law.
Speaking in Chicago over Thanksgiving, another bloody weekend, the Rev. Jesse Jackson said “Poverty is a weapon of mass destruction. There’s 700 empty spaces at the the Thanksgiving table. That’s 700 heartbreaking reasons why we must recommit and redouble our efforts to stop the violence and eradicate poverty in urban and rural America.”
In 2016, Chicago recorded more murders than New York City and Los Angeles combined. Residents in the South and West areas of the city live a lifestyle more suited to a developing country. While Democrats have been wasting time with failed measures, the city’s ghettos have continued to deteriorate.
Where are the Black Lives Matters protests? The violence in Chicago overwhelmingly affects blacks. Far more minorities are gunned down by thugs in Chicago’s South Side than are harassed or brutalized by police.
“If you look at a place like Chicago … it’s got the single toughest gun laws in the United States and it’s a disaster they’re having in certain areas of Chicago,” Trump said on MSNBC’s Morning Joe. “Chicago is sort of a tale of two of cities. But in certain areas of Chicago, there’s tremendous gun violence. More than just about any place.”
Trump put his finger on the problem. Liberals bleating about gun control has done nothing but impinge upon the 2nd Amendment rights of honest citizens.
“If you look we actually have strong laws on the books. And again, you look at places like Chicago. Look at New York City. In New York City, we have among the toughest gun laws in the country and we have gun violence. It’s a real problem. But we have the laws. So you have to make the laws work. The government is not making the laws work. But beyond that, you do have a huge mental health problem. There’s no question about it,” Trump said.
The national murder rate, while historically low, is projected to rise by at least 13 percent this year. Nearly half of that increase is attributable to Chicago.
Almost all of the violence springs from gangs. Teen boys slaughter each other to appear tough and fit in. Adult men kill to settle scores or establish new territory. A generation of poor Chicago boys are trapped in a never-ending cycle of violence.
Tensions that have simmered for years finally boiled over in 2016. This year witnessed a staggering increase in the city’s murder rate. Experts believe that agitators like the BLM protesters are partly responsible for the surge in violence.
“Over the past 18 months, the drawdown of police…has led to an explosion of violence not seen in almost 20 years—in August, 90 people were killed. It’s as if Chicago pulled its firefighters off a massive blaze and now residents are watching the flames engulf the entire city” writes NewsWeek.
Liberals are exacerbating the problems in Chicago by allowing distrust between cops and citizens to fester. Police cannot properly protect a city that doesn’t trust them.
Chicago is already on Trump’s radar. He has a real plan for cleaning up the city- create jobs. Many young men drift into gangs because they feel like they have no other options. Provide them with an outlet to a new life, and many boys would refrain from picking up a gun.
The changes will be slow and grueling. The problems are deeply entrenched. Yet, they can be solved. There is hope for Chicago’s poorer residents. They don’t need to tear each other apart, their lives can be expanded beyond their own cramped neighborhoods. What they need to thrive is better opportunities, which can be granted through improved schooling and employment opportunities.
Trump’s pro-business agenda is set to increase jobs and his school voucher program intends to allow poorer parents the choice of where to send their children to school.
Chicago is a city teetering on the edge of destruction. Crime rates are rising rather than falling. The Democrats plan to save the city has failed. It’s time to see what conservatives can do.