“THE THUG IS AWARE THAT LOUDNESS CONVINCES 60 PEOPLE, WHERE REASONING CONVINCES BUT ONE”– MARK TWAIN
The street gang problem in Chicago is so pervasive and seemingly so intractable most politicians, their minions, and some people who write about it are so obdurate when it comes to recognizing the out-of-control killings and shootings one has to wonder if facing a harsh reality is beyond them. In the last few weeks in Chicago, videos have been released to the media showing two incidents of cops shooting and killing armed teenagers, one 13-years-old and one 17-years-old.
Both were armed with automatic weapons, and both running from the police. In the case of the 13-year-old, he was in an alley at 2:30 in the morning in the company of a 21-year-old gang member. The cops were alerted by the dispatcher of shots being fired at passing vehicles in the area. Both fled the scene when the cops confronted them. The 21-year-old was apprehended immediately, the other fled down an alley. The video clearly shows the young man with a handgun in his hand. He repeatedly fails to heed the officer’s warning to drop his weapon and show his hands. Suddenly he stops at an opening to a fence in the alley, turns towards the officer, and in the same motion flips the gun away as he raises his hands. The officer had 8 tenths of a second to process that move and fired one shot that proved fatal to the young man. The video was shown over and over again in super slow motion with the majority of the media choosing to show him with his hands raised. Unfortunately, life does not evolve in super slow motion. Nobody is refuting the 8 tenths of a second the officer had to react to the threat to his own safety.
However, it soon became apparent that the officer and the police department once again were the focus of the entire incident. Imagine it’s 2:30 in the morning you are answering a call of shots fired you are chasing armed individuals who are gangbangers, you do not know who they are or how old they are, you don’t know about their grades, or life goals, or dreams that immediately become the media’s focus afterward, the cops are not thinking gee “he looks to be only 13 years old, maybe the gun is empty, should I have chased him?” All of a sudden the boy’s mother who had reported him missing a few days before but did not call back to say he was home, is weeping before the press, the press photos of him in school clothes and innocent poses are splashed all over the media. No doubt it’s a tragic story BUT–Immediately after both incidents, the mayor begins to question police foot chases and wants to have them immediately reviewed, the cop is taken off the street in a routine move when involved in a fatal shooting, but both could be facing being stripped of their police powers, fired or even indicted this being Chicago a hotbed of political decisions that trump reality and pander to the current agendas of politicians.
In the case of the fatal shooting of the 17-year old by the police another incident of an armed person fleeing the police. After several warnings to stop and drop the gun the officer fired after the individual slipped and was rising with the gun still in his hand. Here again, the grieving family is before the cameras again next to the mayor questioning the police procedure on foot chases. Here we are May 1st and it’s been over 4 weeks since both incidents took place and the investigative agencies are still trying to find out if the cops acted properly. What the cops had to decide in milliseconds those agencies are still at it over a month later.
If one removes the media and political hysterics on both of these unfortunate incidents some obvious facts are glaring in my opinion. First, let me say both cops acted heroically running and chasing armed gang thugs in the darkness doing what they were sworn to do — protecting communities from armed thugs who bully and intimidate whole communities with killings and shootings. Where the hell would society be if cops did not confront armed gunmen in a city besotted with killings and shootings? Today is May 1st and Chicago has already had over 200 murders and over 1,048 people shot, the most killings and shootings thru April for at least the last 15 years. It takes a specific dynamic emotional spark to murder someone even someone with a mental disorder. Last year Chicago averaged 12 attempted murders a day; 792 were successful and over 4,174 were shot. The fixation on the police is beginning to look like a red herring for inadequacy by those in power. Blaming the cops and guns has produced absolutely no inroads and the violence is escalating. Bad cops need to be weeded out and fired or punished no question but to lose sight of just what’s going on with the gangs is bordering on the super stupid.
When it comes to young teens joining gangs and for gang elders to be recruiting and trolling for them is not without a cause. The 13-year-old with the gun fleeing from the police is what is called a MULE. Gang Bangers are not stupid. Young teens of course have a Juvenile system that practically grants them immunity from prosecution if they are caught with a gun or commit a crime with a gun. A slap on the wrist compared to the hard time a Banger would get if caught strapping and using a gun. Mules and Shorties are vital. So far as we know now the 13-year-old was fleeing with the gun used by the 21-year-old who was shooting at passing vehicles. He survived and the Youngster is dead. A tragic hard fact of life to come to grips with. However, it’s a reality that needs to be confronted. The lifeline of the gangs is the youth. Without them maybe a dysfunctional justice system can right itself and rid a decent society of those who are preying on it and hold those responsible for the ongoing never-ending violence Chicago is enduring. The constant blaming of guns and the cops chasing armed shooters, and gun stores in Indiana and the Federal Government as Chicago’s mayor consistently does is leaving those herds of elephants in the room smirking. Gangs and their mules need some powerful enemies. It’s a war. Children are involved. They are killing babies, toddlers, and hundreds and hundreds of teens and leaving communities frightened to death and have decent people living in fear. “To be prepared for war is the most effective means of preserving the peace. ” George Washington” A simple but inescapable truth in Chicago — A City is in a war no matter how it’s spun–