During the riotous mayhem that hit the Chicago downtown Loop last weekend, mobs of young people looted stores and injured innocent bystanders.
A woman was savagely beaten.
The car of an Indianapolis couple was attacked while they were inside. The husband was hospitalized with minor injuries.
All of this was just the mob action caught on video in the city’s downtown areas. The city was rife with violence. Over the weekend, 38 people were shot, eight of them fatally.
However, it wasn’t all bad news. There are still plenty of good people left in the city who will do the right thing. One woman, Lenora Dennis, saved a young couple being brutally assaulted.
“I felt like if I did not intervene, that young man would have gotten killed right there,” she said, according to The New York Post. “It was just something that I had to do because I couldn’t accept that.”
Dennis rescued them from the attackers—who’d been robbed of their wallets and shoes on top of being beaten—then took them to the police station. She later took them home to get them shoes to wear.
What she was told at the police station was notable, though.
“I was told by the desk [sergeant] that this was going to happen, that it was going to keep happening because Brandon Johnson got elected. That floored me,” she said of Chicago’s mayor-elect, who takes office May 15.
The real problem in Chicago is not that a single bad incident has taken place; it’s that the city is bereft of leadership. The political machine that dominates it is uninterested in setting things right and has completely ignored what the underlying problems are.
Chicago had a brief window to set things right—or at least take a new course—in the most recent election. Mayor Lori Lightfoot was the first Chicago mayor in 40 years to lose re-election. Her tenure was marked by vacillation—from supporting “defund the police” to begging the federal government to help stem rising violent crime—and by general dysfunction.
Lightfoot blamed racism and sexism for her election loss, but the truth is that escalating crime and incompetence did her in. Did Chicagoans learn a lesson from her failure? Maybe some did, but not enough. Teachers unions and the Chicago Democratic machine turned out to elect an even more radical and ridiculous mayor in Johnson.
As to be expected, Lightfoot’s statement about the violence over the weekend was weak at best. She insisted that the mayhem caught on video wasn’t really mayhem at all and that most people in the downtown area were enjoying the nice weather.
“I’m sorry, Lightfoot. I voted for you … but I can’t be involved in any level of sugarcoating what I saw,” Dennis, the good Samaritan, said in an interview with Fox News. “That was mayhem.”
Finally, somebody with common sense. Perhaps Dennis should have run for mayor. But no, they got Johnson. As expected, he had quite a take on what was happening.
“In no way do I condone the destructive activity we saw in the Loop and lakefront this weekend,” Johnson said in a statement. “It is unacceptable and has no place in our city. However …”
Here we go.
After the bland acknowledgement that bad stuff happening in the city is bad, we get to the nub of Johnson’s beliefs and a window into how he will likely govern:
… However, it is not constructive to demonize youth who have otherwise been starved of opportunities in their own communities. Our city must work together to create spaces for youth to gather safely and responsibly, under adult guidance and supervision, to ensure that every part of our city remains welcome for both residents and visitors. This is one aspect of my comprehensive approach to improve public safety and make Chicago livable for everyone.
Don’t “demonize” the mob? Johnson is making it look like these youths were just looking for jobs and a nice public park to play hopscotch.
Johnson doubled down on Wednesday.
“They’re young. Sometimes they make silly decisions. They do. So, we have to make sure that we are investing to make sure that young people know that they are supported,” he said.
Savagely beating innocent people in the street is apparently a “silly” indiscretion of youth.
These teen looters aren’t looking for jobs. This kind of behavior isn’t just random youthful indiscretion, it points to a much deeper cultural problem.
They need fathers in their homes and a stable family life. They need communities in which crime and bad behavior is discouraged and upstanding behavior is encouraged. They need an environment in which repeat violent criminals are kept off the streets. They need quality, safe schools that focus on character instead of dangerous schools that promote so-called social justice and cultural revolution.
They aren’t getting any of that from the mayor-to-be. Expect more lectures on “systemic racism,” a demoralized police force, rising crime, and an ongoing exodus of decent, law-abiding people who’ve become fed up.
This is a self-inflicted wound and a tragedy for a great American city. Our left-wing media wants to pretend that there is no crime wave and that dangerous and ugly city conditions are just a “housing” problem. That’s nonsense.
Our cities don’t have to be dangerous and filled with drug addicts passed out on the street. Failure was a choice.
It appears that Chicago and many other cities will have to experience much more pain while the powers-that-be continue to look for excuses for why things continue getting worse.
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