“The FOP is a Threat to Police Reform in Chicago”

This was the article in the Chicago Tribune on April 17th that captured my attention.

The authors were John Legend, an entertainer and activist, and Neil Franklin, the executive director of the Law Enforcement Action Partnership and a former police officer.

For the record, I believe this article was thoughtless and detrimental to its readers. I excuse ninety percent of the article as talking points and leftwing agenda.

To begin; the Fraternal Order of Police is the union that is obligated by rule to assist, protect, and defend its members.

It is not a group that arbitrarily picks and chooses by political whim, which officers are entitled to legal protection or financial assistance. The FOP is not swayed by political agenda, nor by threats from politicians or anti-police activists’ groups. The FOP protects all its members.

The article condemns the past ‘lock ‘em all up’ theory as overused and under-successful.

I argue that it was never used properly.

It was abandoned and hijacked by the politically indulgent who demanded too many privileges and accommodations for those being punished. This was a failed exercise from conception.

(Bart Everson)

 

This theory of punishment would work if we modeled our prison system after nations in Latin America where they build their prisons to be uncomfortable and unappealing. If prison life was deliberately made difficult, I doubt the recidivism rate would be as high as it is in the United States prison systems.

The article complains that just a few years ago homicides were up and “police use of power went unchecked.”

But now, Chicago “is on the forefront of a movement that is finally bringing justice, accountability and safety to the criminal justice system.”

(Chicago_Police_Interceptor_Utility Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported by Asher Heimermann)

(Chicago_Police_Interceptor_Utility Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported by Asher Heimermann)

 

The homicide rate is down 14 percent from 2017. The court system is allowing more people out while awaiting trial without the necessity of posting a bond, because posting bond to ensure the arrestee comes to court is directly hurting the poor.

Bonds are now set according to the financial ability of the arrestee. This is considered the end of criminalizing poverty. This is considered “finally bringing justice, accountability and safety to the criminal justice system.”

As of April 17th, 2019, Chicago has seen 558 shootings with 114 of those victims dying.

misguided citizen demands

City of Chicago. (Raymond Tambunan)

 

Every 4 ½ hours, someone is shot in Chicago.

The extent of justice, accountability and safety is apparently in the eye of the beholder. Chicago detectives solve 1 in 6 murders.

The reasoning is simple: witnesses and often victims will not cooperate with the police investigating these incidents. According to the leaders of this once great city, it is the police officer’s fault; they don’t afford the local population the respect they deserve.  Another talking point without merit.

Police officers are being attacked at an historic pace and criminal charging has been absent.

 

FOP recently led protests outside States Attorney Foxx’s office in regard to her mishandling of cases of physical violence against police officers and the lack of charging or improper use of reduced charges.

According to these authors, there was ‘some’ report that hate groups were present at this protest. They also write that communities of color aren’t willing to come forward when police are in alliance with white supremacists.

Over half of the Chicago Police Department is minority and over over half of the upper echelon of CPD are black. The mayor is black. The Cook County Board President is black. The Chief Judge is black. The Illinois States Attorney is black. Of the last group of police recruits, 70 percent were minorities. 

This article about race and reform does innumerable damage to the citizens of Chicago and propagates the myth of racist Chicago Police Officers.

early warning program

Police recruits salute during the playing of the National Anthem at the Chicago Police Department recruit graduation ceremony at Chicago’s Navy Pier Grand Ballroom March 30, 2015. (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Spc. Jason Dorsey, Illinois National Guard Public Affairs)

 

Talking points are never challenged and therefore are allowed to morph into phony realities.

People need to wake up and demand more accountability. They need to hold politicians, journalists, and priests responsible, just to name a few. Challenge the leaders to solve issues instead of using issues as talking points during the next election cycle.

Push your police to do their jobs, but, support them when they do. When called into action yourselves, assist your police and community in ways that you can.

Quit the talking points and demand action.