Commentary

Even Chicago's Mayor Admits Police Are 'Losing the Streets'

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After a bad weekend in Chicago, even Mayor Lori Lightfoot admits that her city’s police might be “losing the streets.”

According to a report from WFLD-TV, Lightfoot’s remarks came after a weekend in which over 40 people were shot, nine of them fatally.

While Fox News reported that gun violence is down somewhat in the Windy City this year, Lightfoot said that they had experienced several weekends where shootings had been relatively high.

“One weekend does not make a trend,” Lightfoot said Tuesday from a conference in New York City.

“But we’ve now had a couple weekends, where it feels like we are losing the streets.”

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Lightfoot didn’t indicate that she wanted to make a change at the top, at least not yet.

“I do continue to have faith in Superintendent [Eddie] Johnson,” she said “But it’s no secret that I’m pushing him and his leadership team to do better.”

While gun violence has been down compared to last year, the city has had a number of bloody weekends in recent months.

On Memorial Day weekend, for instance, 43 people were shot, seven fatally. This was despite the fact that 1,200 extra police were out on the streets.

Do you think Chicago's gun control laws are too strict?

Right before July 4, meanwhile, there were 50 people shot. An extra 1,500 officers were out on patrol for the Independence Day weekend and several operations netted 170 arrests on guns and drugs charges.

It’s no secret that Chicago has some of the most restrictive gun laws in the country. And yet that doesn’t seem to have stopped anything.

Chicago has been one of America’s most violent cities for years now. Stories like the weekend last year where 16 children were shot or another where a 3-year-old boy was shot are absolutely heartbreaking — and yet, so common they hardly cause you to bat an eye.

After one high-profile shooting last September, Illinois Democrat Sen. Dick Durbin was equally fed up. So, he decided to blame the GOP for not having strict nationwide gun laws. You know, like the ones in Chicago.

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“This is heartbreaking,” he wrote. “Chicago has lost far too many aspiring young people to senseless gun violence. When will Republicans in Congress finally decide to act?”

And that’s the lesson that Democrats take away from incidents like these. Not that Chicago’s gun laws don’t work. Not that they take guns out of the hands of law-abiding citizens and ensure that the only people who have them are criminals. Not that people aren’t able to defend themselves. Not that the police are overstretched and trying to deal with an epidemic of crime in “Chiraq.”

Instead, the problem is that there are too many other locales who don’t take the same suicidal tack against the Second Amendment that Chicago has taken.

It’s worth noting that Mayor Lightfoot has only recently taken over from the profoundly ineffectual Rahm Emanuel. It remains to be seen whether or not her administration can do any better in terms of gun violence than Emanuel’s did.

However, when you consider the fact that she’s called for tighter gun laws, things don’t necessarily look too promising. Different deck chairs, same Titanic. No wonder the police are “losing the streets.”

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C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal for four years.
C. Douglas Golden is a writer who splits his time between the United States and Southeast Asia. Specializing in political commentary and world affairs, he's written for Conservative Tribune and The Western Journal for four years. Aside from politics, he enjoys spending time with his wife, literature (especially British comic novels and modern Japanese lit), indie rock, coffee, Formula One and football (of both American and world varieties).
Birthplace
Morristown, New Jersey
Education
Catholic University of America
Languages Spoken
English, Spanish
Topics of Expertise
American Politics, World Politics, Culture




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