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Tag: murder

Chicago is lost

Image: PV Bella

“These murders went out of the comprehension of a civilized city,” … “The butchering of seven men by open daylight raises this question for Chicago: Is it helpless?” (Chicago Tribune on the St. Valentines Massacre)

As summer turns to fall, none of the news is good. COVID-19 is still a threat. Getting shot, killed, beaten, robbed, or carjacked in Chicago is a worse threat. Now, experts are warning the upcoming flu season could be “brutal.”

We are lost. We do not know what to fear most, disease or being violently victimized as the Summer Olympics of Violence winds down. If the violence abates during the fall, Mayor Lightfoot and her Police Superintendent, David Brown, will claim victory. All their failed, and failing plans, strategies, deployments, and precision deployments worked. The mayor will award Brown the Gold Cookie. The losers will be winners.

Crime usually drops off in the fall and through winter. Of course, the friendly media will credit failure and convince the gullible naïfs in this city that Brown was a success. The citizens of Chicago are easily fooled and will believe whatever the media tells them.

Chicagoans complain about everything except the things that matter, like life and death on the streets. The bloodshed is hushed up. Brown tosses out dry, boring data. How many guns the police took off the street, how many people were arrested for gun possession, blah, blah.

Whatever is being done is not stopping the violence. It is not mitigating or curbing it. Prevention is almost impossible.

Seven people were killed during the St. Valentine’s massacre, a mass shooting heard around the world. Newspapers nationwide were in an uproar. Headlines screamed. Editorials were brutal. The citizenry was appalled. It led to the demise of Capone’s grip on Chicago.

There were over 50 mass shootings this year, most over the spring and summer. Not one peep from the friendly editorial boards. Not one word from community groups or supposed activists. No outrage from the citizens. It is all ho-hum. Lightfoot and the incompetent State’s Attorney, Kim Foxx keep getting the benefit of the doubt. 

Foxx is supposed to be the voice of victims in court. Foxx flipped the script. She is the voice of the criminals. The news media and editorial boards lap it up.

We are heading into another warm weekend. Already, “At least four people were killed and 10 others wounded in a string of shootings across Chicago overnight. A fifth victim was beaten to death.” (WGN9 9/17/2021) These shootings and the beating occurred from one end of the city to another, 78th Street to Irving Park Road, between 8:30 PM and 8:30 AM.

Why is the violence in this city not considered “out of the comprehension of a civilized city?” Are we no longer civilized? Where is the outrage over the daily butchering of men, women, and children, even infants, all hours of the day and night? 

“Is Chicago helpless?” The answer is yes. If COVID-19 does not kill you, a stray bullet might. Yet, the news media is focusing on COVID more than violence. The mayor and Tex Brown are getting a free pass. There is no anger among the citizens. No one is pointing fingers at the real culprits, the mayor, most of the mute alderpersons, the Police Superintendent, Kim Foxx, and the courts. We are being failed on all levels. We are accepting failure as an option.

The weekend is upon us. The weather will be nice. It will be perfect for the Summer Olympic of Violence games to go on. So, mask up, social distance, stay out of crowds, and stay off the streets. Stay alive.

Where is the outrage

Image: PV Bella

“In an interview with the Tribune on Friday, Lightfoot said people throughout Chicago are afraid because of street violence but said her administration is making long-needed changes that will help curb crime over time.” (Chicago Tribune- 9/10/2021). 

Mayor Lori Lightfoot does not realize, Chicago ran out of time months ago. She is hoping the onset of cooler weather will drive the number of violent crimes down. Lightfoot can award Police Superintendent David Brown a Gold Cookie for winning the Summer Olympics of Violence. She can claim victory. She knows the people and friendly news media will buy it.

Memories are short in this city. The news media is too cozy with City Hall. They will praise the mayor and the superintendent for their “success.” The gullible citizens will lap it up. Peace at last! Let’s have a parade with a fall food and music festival in Grant Park.

There should have been screaming editorials demanding change and for Superintendent Brown to resign or be fired by midsummer. Alderman should have been shouting from the rooftops to fire Brown. Failure is an option is Chicago’s new motto.

Part of public safety is crime control and prevention. The criminals are out of control, and the daily numbers show there is little prevention. Brown keeps playing the name game with strategies, plans, deployments, and precision deployments. It is alphabet soup.

“Gangs, guns, and drugs” is the new old bold plan Brown trotted out last week. We heard that from the past nine former superintendents and their interim appointees, going back to the Daley administration. Tex Brown shoots from the lip, week after failing week. He can’t hit the broadside of a barn.

I am waiting for the week before Halloween when Superintendent David Brown can blame the violence on the ghosts of Al Capone and his gang. He will form a Community Paranormal Untouchable Ghostbusters Unit (PUGU) to go after them.

Year to date, over 3000 people have been shot and over 500 hundred killed by gunfire. The street violence is out of control, with carjackings, robberies, and other violent crimes or crimes with threats of violence. Infants, toddlers, children, teens, adults, and the elderly were victims of violence and murder. Over 30 police officers have been shot at or shot so far this year. One, Ella French, was murdered, and her partner catastrophically injured.

This failure is our fault too. We should demand better. There is no collective anger among the citizens. Since the pandemic loosened up, all Chicago wants to do is go out and party hearty. Ooh, a concert. Ooh, a street fest. More murders and violent crime? Meh. All we want are bread and circuses. We should be mass protesting at City Hall every day.

Sometimes, elected officials must make unpopular choices to solve thorny issues. It takes courage. There is no courage at City Hall, the State’s Attorney’s office, or the courts. There is no will to be unpopular.

Chicago became a spineless city. We surrendered to the barbarians.

Next month is the 150th anniversary of the Great Chicago Fire. The city was devastated, burned to the ground. While the final embers were still smoldering, the civic leaders and boosters started rebuilding. We became the city of we will, and we can. We will rise from the ashes bigger, better, and stronger. We did.

The city is metaphorically burning to the ground. Violence spreads throughout the city like the wind-blown firestorm of 1871. There is no one to put out the fire.

Don’t go out at night

Image: PV Bella

This was updated. I found a video to download and it runs faster. See below.

Downtown Chicago used to be safe at night. From the Loop to River North, Gold Coast, and beyond, you could walk down State Street or Michigan Avenue in relative safety. You could even walk on the lakefront until closing hour.

The street lights, store windows, neon, and other attractions lent a romatintic atmosphere. The crowds were gone. People were out enjoying themselves. You could go to the movies, walk to dinner, then just wak. Maybe you would stop into a watering hole for a drink, or two or three. There were clubs with all kinds of entertainment.

During the Christmas season, there was a festive air. Christmas lights, street decorations, store window decorations, and Sal Army Santas ringing their bells. There was a festive athmosphere. People were in a happier mood.

No more.

Criminals own the night. Bands of violent criminals attack, and brutalize people for no reason, or violently rob them. No one steps in to stop them. No one steps in to help.

The video below shows two men attacked, brutally beaten, and robbed on the 400 block of Noth State Street.

For over four minutes,, two men were robbed and brutalized while bystanders shot phone videos, celebrated, danced, and twerked. Motorists kept driving by, trying to avoid hitting anyone.

Nowhere is safe in this Mad Max era of Chicago. Michigan Avenue, River North, and the Gold Coast, are no longer safe at night. The romance and festivity turned into a nightmare. Even the parking lots are not safe.

People used to be able to go out to dinner, walk, stop in one or two places for a late-night drink or two or three. There are clubs for entertainment. Now, people are the entertainment for criminals and their bystander fans.

Downtown, North and South Michigan Avenue and River North turned into violent crime-ridden areas. There are roving bands of robbers, thieves, groups wilding, and other violent actors. Even during the day, bands of thieves invade designer stores, stealing thousands or tens of thousands of dollars worth of merchandise. They will pummel anyone who tries to stop them.

Nighttime is the worst. The night is when there is no value for human life. The night is when you are most vulnerable. The night is when you could be beaten, shot, wounded, or killed. Areas once known for safety are now dangerous.

The revitalized gem, Grant Park turned into a staging ground for wildings, groups of young people running amok, terrorizing the area because they can. The Magnificent Mile is no longer magnificent. River North and River West are dangerous. The night turns these neighborhoods into the Wild West.

It is a pity our city came to this. The places we should be proud of are turning into violent,, crime-ridden battlegrounds at night. This criminality is not new and has been building up over the past few years. It started to get worse last year and is worsening this year.

The alderpersons representing the wards are complaining. Their complaints land on deaf ears. One alderperson was the victim of a battery while waiting for friends outside of a restaurant. Mayor Lightfoot is trying to please everyone and is pleasing no one. The citizens, news media, and City Council cannot figure out what she is doing.

Thanks to City Hall, an incompetent Superintendent of Police, a State’s Attorney who cares more about coddling criminals than prosecutions, and a court system that enables a revolving door of catch and release, the Loop, Mag Mile, and River North went from being attractive, safe places to visit or walk around to places to fear.

Nowhere is safe at night in those areas. The criminals know there are cameras all over the place. They do not care. They do not fear arrest or imprisonment if, by fat chance, they are prosecuted. This is not just criminality. It is a culture of violence. Violence is acceptable and expected behavior.

Criminals are waging war. There is no rhyme or reason for their actions. They do it because they can. They do it because they want to. They do it for fun. They do it because no one will stop them. They do it because they know there will be no consequences.

Don’t go out at night.

Who Speaks for the Dead

Image: PV Bella

“We speak for the dead,” was a saying among homicide detectives and Forensic Services personnel on the Chicago Police Department. No one else speaks for the dead in Murder City.

The saying means they would move heaven and earth to get justice for murder victims. The mayors and alderpersons do not speak for the dead. The State’s Attorney’s Office does not speak for the dead. The courts do not speak for the dead. The local news media does not speak for the dead.

We are in the middle of August. As of yesterday, 270 victims were shot, 44 were killed. From Friday through Sunday, 47 victims were shot and 5 were killed, including two purported mass shootings. 

On Sunday a 7-year-old child was murdered, in the Belmont Central neighborhood while sitting in a parked car. Her 6-year-old sister is fighting for her life. The death toll of children, down to toddlers and infants is heartbreaking.

Every single murder victim was a son, daughter, father, mother, brother, sister, niece, nephew, cousin, or grandparent. The families of the dead mourn, grieve and suffer the loss of a loved one. No matter their past or present transgressions, no one deserves to be murdered. Too many are innocent bystanders. 

The dead and their families cry out for justice. Justice is denied. Detectives, forensic investigators, and street cops are stretched thin. They are overwhelmed. There are not enough of them to investigate, close cases, make arrests, and take them to trial.

Our elected officials sit on the sidelines offering nothing. There is no plan. There is failure after failure.

Communities live in fear of retaliation if they cooperate with the police. No one is safe. No neighborhood is safe. Good people want to help, but not at the expense of their lives or the lives of their loved ones. 

How many more people must be killed before someone says enough is enough? 

Forget about the root causes of crime, the systemic this or that, faulting parents, and other phony issues ginned up by alleged experts with no expertise or whack jobs on social media.

It is past time to change the conversation. It is past time for aldermen, especially aldermen whose wards are most affected by the violence to step up. They are as responsible as the mayor for public safety.

We need more people to speak for the dead. The Chicago Police Department needs more detectives and forensic specialists. We need a prosecutor who is willing to prosecute crimes instead of nit-picking detectives to provide more and more and more evidence.

We need the courts to stop releasing dangerous people out on low or recognizance bonds. Electronic monitoring is failing.

Chicago elected officials are losing credibility every day in this Summer of Violence. Talk is cheap. Phony raw emotions will not abate the murder and mayhem. We need people to speak for the dead, in the communities, in City Hall, in the State’s Attorney’s office, and in the courts.

Either be part of the solution or get the hell out of the way.