Tuesday, July 7, 2015

Chiraq Blues

Antonio Brown collapses after hearing his 7-year-old son, Amari was killed.
It was Rahm Emanuel at his worst yesterday, artlessly ducking any and all responsibility for the city's pandemic gun violence, calling for more and longer prison sentences, and once again blaming black parents for the shooting deaths of their own children.

Last weekend's body count included at least 10 dead and 55 wounded from 3 p.m. Thursday until just before dawn Monday. Mostly all of the victims were young, in their late teens or 20s including 7-year-old Amari Brown, struck by a bullet on the way home from watching fireworks.

Rahm had a couple of valid points:
There are too many guns in the hands of way too many children on the streets of Chiraq. But even there he managed to duck any responsibility for his role as White House Chief of Staff in icing any attempts at national anti-gun legislation, even telling A.G. Eric Holder to "shut the fuck up" on gun control. Yes, the easy availability of guns is a major factor, especially with bordering Tea-Party led, gun-crazy states like Indiana and Wisconsin nearby, making any local Chicago gun-control laws useless.

Rahm has another point:
It's not about police. They're doing hard work, doing the job they need." 
Yes, it's not mainly a policing problem. The cops generally come into play after the shooting is done.

But the Mayor used that point to slam community residents, including Amari's father, Antonio Brown, for "not cooperating" with the cops.

No doubt, there's a lack of trust, especially in the black community, where police doing "hard work" can translate into a quarter million stop-and-frisks a year ago and likely the same this summer.

But Rahm saved the worst for last yesterday, doing his best Bill Cosby moralizing and parent blaming.
"The idea that you're taking a 7-year-old out at midnight, or near midnight, at some point the rest of us say that's a 7-year-old out at midnight, or near, 11:55. Near midnight." 
It was that comment that drew the strongest community reaction.
"Stunning that he is asking for cooperation from the father but nevertheless in the same voice is indicting him and basically saying he is the cause of his son's death," said Rev. Ira Acree, pastor of Greater St. John Bible Church.
And what about the other 65 shooting victims. All due to parents letting their children stay up late to watch July 4the fireworks?

How about at least some accountability, not only for black and Latino youth unemployment, but for the free flow of guns, for isolated and blighted neighborhoods, shuttered schools, clinics and after-school programs?

Final point... Mr. Mayor,  before pointing a finger at other parents, please tell us what your son doing out unsupervised at 10:30 p.m. on the 4200 block of North Hermitage Ave. talking on his iphone the night he was supposedly mugged?

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