A few weeks ago, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel was credited with turning the tide on his city’s chronic gun violence epidemic.
“Chicago Tactics Put Major Dent in Killing Trend,” trumpeted the New York Times in early June. At around the same time, a Time magazine cover profile about Emanuel headlined “Chicago Bull” by David Von Drehle said changes Emanuel “has made in the police department have put a dent in crime.”
What a difference a month can make.
In the past week with the weather getting warmer, gun violence has riddled Chicago streets. From Wednesday to Sunday over the July 4th weekend, more than 70 people were shot and 11 died, according to the Chicago Tribune. Three more people were shot and killed last night on Chicago’s West Side, according to the Tribune. Among the dead: a 15-year-old boy.
For Emanuel and Chicago, the headlines – and positive narratives – are changing.
“Violence reverberates through the city, even with decline in shootings, homicides,” reads the headline to a comprehensive story in the Chicago Tribune. “Gangs, weather, access to guns, reluctant witnesses drive holiday weekend bloodshed,” reads the headline of a similar story in the Chicago Sun-Times.
Comparing Chicago to the Dante Aligheiri’s “Inferno,” a 14th century novel that describers the horrors of hell, the Tribune’s editorial on Tuesday seems to capture the horror coming from the Windy City.
“Dante’s ‘Chicago,’ were he to write it today, would tell of a city understanding the vicious nature and impact of each shooting,” the editorial reads. “Law-abiding Chicagoans unable to escape the relentless gunplay on their streets would ruefully identify with the inscription on the gate to Dante’s allegorical hell: ‘Abandon all hope, ye who enter here.’”
First of all, to describe Dante’s Divine Comedy as a novel is about as accurate as Time magazine claiming Chicago had put a dent in violent crime. Don’t believe everything you read in the papers.
What’s a crusading mayor to do?
“Having effective gun control is essential to providing safety around the city,” Emanuel said at a Tuesday press conference. Stressing that Chicago laws on guns need to be different than those around Illinois, Emanuel said that “gun control is essential.”
If we get a little repetitive here at BTL.com, you can’t blame us. The idiot Democrats (or Arabs, or ChiComs, or Mexican gangs, etc., etc.) never change their tune; how can we? They drove Detroit into the ditch, and Chicago’s on the shoulder of the road, drifting that way too (as is the whole state of Illinois). We’d rather these municipalities got their acts together, but if they refuse, is it wrong for us to enjoy the spectacle?
PS: I joke about global warming, but as I noted the other day, black youth unemployment (ages 16-19) jumped last month to 43.6%. That can’t be good news. It wouldn’t be in Boston.
A new study that indicates low-income teenagers in Boston who hold summer jobs are less likely to engage in violence was hailed by the mayor and other community leaders as proof that youth employment programs can change people’s lives.
Don’t blame these kids; blame the ObamEconomy.