, 19 tweets, 5 min read Read on Twitter
I am a big fan of @politico_il, I read it just about every day, and you should too...but we should unpack today's lead story. #Twill
In it Politico reported the letter President @ToniPreckwinkle sent to @chicagosmayor objecting to the rhetoric being pushed by CPD and the Mayor's Superintendent Johnson.
"Superintendent Johnson must stop misleading the public about why gun violence remains a challenging problem in Chicago."
The letter also goes into facts about why the rhetoric of CPD is false, and offers to meet and pool resources of the county and the city to address the real reasons for the violence.
Politico quickly questions if "there are ulterior motives at play" and hot takes that "Maybe Preckwinkle is trying to seize control of the criminal justice reform discussions".
While I can not speak to President Preckwinkle's motives, I can speak to the racist narrative CPD (and as spokesperson Supt. Johnson) spewed during the Rahm era, which is disappointingly being carried over into @chicagosmayor's administration.
In 2017, Supt. Johnson enlisted the help of Republican Leader Jim Durkin to pass a tough-on-crime bill focused on repeat gun offenders. chicago.cbslocal.com/2017/05/25/edd…
At the hearing, the Supt said, "“It’s the repeat offenders who repeatedly come back into our neighborhoods to shoot and kill. And if we don’t send them a message about holding them accountable, then what are we doing?”
He also stated: Passage of this bill will cut murders in half. When pressed how he knows this, he stated he just knows. (Still one of the most amazing testimonies in committee I have witnessed.) The bill passed and was signed by Gov. Rauner.
After his first attempt worked, Supt. Johnson went back to the tough-on-crime well and pushed another racist bill focused on repeat car-jackers. This bill like the previous one was promoted as the solution -- when in reality did nothing but target black and brown residents.
Despite advocates proving the bill was not going to do what Supt. Johnson argued, he pressed and eventually passed a version. chicago.suntimes.com/2018/3/16/1832…
The end result was a bill that accomplished nothing but making people who looked like me feel safer living in a city with people who didn't. It was a racially driven narrative to appease the part of Chicago that mattered to Rahm Emanuel.
Add Rahm's dog whistle speeches about parent responsibility, classifying everything as gang-related, and the dog and pony show every Monday with the press (after another bloody weekend) and you had a well crafted and racially driven communication plan.
For the most part the media ate it up. Covering every "new" crime initiative that was just a repacking of previous attempts...drooling over video footage of guns collected, or arrest reports made.
Very seldom asking about the dismal rate in which CPD solves shootings 5% and murders 26%. A fact mentioned in President Preckwinkle's letter.
Which brings us back to the Politico's cynical article on Preckwinkle's letter. I get it, drama drives clicks. However, to dismiss outright the content of that letter to push a politician grudge narrative is disappointing.
We are in a real fight in Chicago regarding the future of how we handle criminal justice. The advances we have made in criminal justice reform has never been more under direct attack by law enforcement and the city at risk of reverting back.
To see our new mayor so quickly embrace the rhetoric and devastating playbook of the previous administration is deeply disturbing. To see the FOP proudly supporting the mayor's focus on the individual rather than the system is demoralizing.
I get that some people don't like the messenger, but the message is real. If @Chicagosmayor is going to continue to travel down this path - we are going to need more than @ToniPreckwinkle speaking out. We also are going to need the media to ask the real questions that matter.
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