An 11-year-old Chicago girl was shot in the back on Sunday.
In total, this past weekend saw 55 people shot in Chicago, with at least six of them dying from their injuries, WGN-TV reported.
Those familiar with the situation in Chicago are not too surprised with the surge, given that the prevalence of violent crime in the Midwestern city has been steadily growing over the course of the past year and change. There had been 266 homicides thus far this year as of June 2, 11 more than at the same point last year, according to the Chicago Tribune.
Now, 2020 in and of itself saw a huge uptick in homicides when compared to the previous year — there were 519 Chicago homicides in 2019, over 200 fewer than the 777 that occurred in 2020.
Despite the reality of these startling trends, Chicago’s own mayor, Democrat Lori Lightfoot, continually fails to address the crime problem.
“The big issue we have now with the Lightfoot administration in Chicago is … the mayor doesn’t pay a lot of attention to violence,” former Sgt. Betsy Brantner Smith, a retired 29-year police veteran of a large metropolitan police department in Chicago’s suburbs, told The Western Journal.
“Chicago’s a very broken place and Lori Lightfoot helped break it.”
“It’s more popular to go after the police than it is to look at some of the real issues that are happening,” she said.
Smith, currently a spokeswoman for the National Police Association and a law enforcement trainer, is quite familiar with Chicago’s crime problem. Born and raised in Illinois, Smith has lived “in the city of Chicago or the metro area for most of my adult life,” she said.
“She is extremely progressive and especially since last year, since the George Floyd incident, she is very much about trying to hamstring the police department as opposed to allowing them to try to stop the violence,” Smith said.
Rhetorically, Lightfoot appears to be much more focused on pushing “police accountability” than on curbing homicides and other violent crimes.
For example, the most recent news release posted to the mayor’s re-election campaign website on May 29 boasts the unveiling of two “police accountability proposals” that will build on “the administration’s police reform measures.”
Posts from the past several weeks on the mayor’s Twitter feed, while littered with calls for police reform and accountability, lack any mention of the uptick in violent crime.
This proposal will significantly overhaul how the Chicago Police Department’s leadership and members are overseen, managed & held accountable when necessary. Creating a civilian commission like this one has long been a goal of mine. https://t.co/WIZrjzy85V
— Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) May 24, 2021
“One year after the murder of George Floyd, significant, real reform is coming to Chicago.” https://t.co/W5LRlXNF7s
— Lori Lightfoot (@LoriLightfoot) May 26, 2021
Chicago police will focus on community policing by expanding the department’s Civil Rights Unit and adding new initiatives to better connect with city residents, police Superintendent David Brown announced Friday.https://t.co/p0f3btnZIV
— Lori Lightfoot (@LoriLightfoot) June 5, 2021
“If there was any other city that had the level of violence that Chicago has on a weekly basis, it would be national news 24/7,” Smith told The Western Journal. “That’s one of the frustrations of people who live there and people who care about Chicago is no one else really seems to care.”
“Focusing on crime is not going to get Lori Lightfoot re-elected. So, I would guess that’s why she’s not focusing on that,” she said.
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