Today Veteran Black Community Activists Mark Allen and Wallace "Gator" Bradley applauded new Chicago Police Superintendent-Designee Garry McCarthy's selection of Al Wysinger as his 1st Deputy, a position that Wysinger as one of the finalists for Superintendent is uniquely qualified for and not just because of his Blackness.
A Coalition of Black community leaders started the campaign for a Black to be first Deputy after McCarthy was selected and after a number of Black elected officials expressed their dissatisfaction that many of the new high ranking city appointments by Mayor Emanuel was not represented by enough Blacks in high places. Mayor Emanuel responded by saying he was not just committed to a person's race, but their ability to do the best job and in Wysinger is not just Black, but qualified.
While Bradley and Allen commend McCarthy for his selection of Wysinger, that their coalitions efforts will not stop there, but will now shift their focus on McCarthy's retention of Ronald Holt as Director of the CAPS Program inwhich the same criteria applies. Ronald Holt is not just a Black candidate but is absolutely has the respect of the rank and file and he has a unique love and rapport in the community where people trust him and he should be retained as Director of CAPS. It is our hope that The City Council Black Caucus will unite around the retention of Ronald Holt as well as McCarthy prepares for his confirmation hearing on June 6th.
Will New Chicago Police Chief McCarthy Appoint a Black 1st Deputy?
New Chicago Police Chief-Designee Garry McCarthy can score major political points with Black Aldermen who have to vote on his confirmation who have recently publicly criticized Mayor Elect Emanuel for the lack of Black faces in high level appointments in what is still a majority Black populated City. And McCarthy may score political points with dozens of Black advocacy groups and religious leaders who had been meeting seperately on the issue of Police Chief and were meeting the night before Mayor Elect Emanuel's press conference announcement as they had just decided to have a major press conference that very next day on asking Emanuel to choose between Eugene Williams or Al Wysinger.
Where do all of these Black Aldermen, religious, civic and community leaders now take their anger over the fact that they were very late in their final decision to public lobby for the selection of either Wysinger or Williams for the head position of Superintendent? They can try to lobby this new City Council to reject McCarthy because there was a lot of support for a local person from the ranks to selected Chief and McCarthy is from New Jersey and it could show that this new City Council is not going to be a rubber stamp for Mayor Emanuel. Or McCarthy, who already knows the sentiment for a local person from the ranks to be at the top, made the public statement that he would definately pick from the ranks for his 1st Deputy so he can truly hit the ground running. With that, McCarthy has a real opportunity to appease Black leadership by publicly interviewing Wysinger and Williams for 1st Deputy and by making his choice of either of them prior to his City Council confirmation hearings.
Knowing Mayor Elect Eamnuel's public position to have his entire team in place prior to his inauguration, McCarthy is proabaly going to decide sooner than later his choice for 1st Deputy. McCarthy should know by now that the majority of his decidion making is going to revolve around issues that deal with the public safety issues primarity in majority Black communities first and thus McCarthy would certainly beneift from a knowledgable 1st Deputy with strong community ties to Black community, religious, and political leaders as Wysinger and Williams both enjoy.
All those Black leaders who have been meeting, but decide too late to lift up Wysinger or Williams as the choice for Superintendent need to publicly speak up NOW with regard to McCarthy fulfilling his commitment to a local 1st Deputy by selecting either Wysinger or Williams as 1st Deputy. Now this is a natural accountability question after the top choice has been made with the next focus on who the 1st Deputy will be who will have most of the responsibilities for enforcing day to day decision making from the Superintendent. Waiting to make a sound decision as before will put Black leadership in yet another reactionary mode when this public call now for Wynsinger or Williams as 1st Deputy is a proactice call that cannot wait!!
With Wysinger and Williams making it to the finals means that they were not in the finalists because they were Black but because they were from the ranks and qualified, so the choice of either Wysinger or Williams as 1st Deputy solves the question of McCarthy picking from the ranks who are uniquely qualified, and it helps ease some of the public disappointment that Black Aldermen are voicing against the lack of Blacks in high level appointments. Its a start, but NOT if Black Alderman and Black community leadership do not speak up for Wysinger or Williams being chosen NOW !! I'm using this blog and commentary as a stimulus for other Black leadership to be proactive on this 1st Deputy choice and not reactive.