NO AMOUNT of police presence alone can resolve the desperate economic conditions by which so much of the random violence is rooted. Far too much of the criminal activity is not connected to ANY established street gangs. You resolve a desperate economic problem with a desperate economic solution.
Anyone who is a veteran organizer/activist working in the area of crime intervention and prevention know that the overwhelming majority of our people are in the criminal element for doing something desperate to address their desperate economic conditions. Then the Black community is overwhelmed with the "walking time bombs" left in our community from the closed mental health centers and police presence alone cannot resolve this and what we are really preparing ourselves for is a major confrontation that just results is even more arrests, violence, and death.
At a recent State public hearing on desperate urban unemployment conditions there were hundreds of ex-offenders who angrily testified about their frustration in that almost all of their efforts to find legitimate sources of income were falling on deaf ears and the lack of legitimate job opportunities were all but forcing them right back into the original criminal elements that landed them in jail in the first place. Many of those ex-offenders also testified at how many had started or became a member of non profit community economic empowerment groups to create legitimate community business and job opportunities only for their efforts to get funding met with rejection after rejection, and now they too are left to fend for themselves in trying to make living for themselves.
NO AMOUNT of police deployment without a matching economic solution is going to erase the ongoing desperate acts of these members as well as thousands and thousands of non members all over the streets of Chicago absolutely forced into the gang, drug, and other illegal street economies in the severe absence of not enough legal economic outlets not just facing these constituencies, but far too many "good people" who also get caught up in joining those same illegal street economies when all their efforts at finding a legal income fails.
Those of us who are veterans of the streets know that the announced efforts of Mayor Emanuel and Chicago Police Superintendent Gary McCarthy are announcing today will be symbolic at best and offer no real solution to the root causes that the desperate economic conditions at the root of violence will continue to plague the south and westsides. Again, The south and westside needs an economic revival that will sustain and increase community businesses and jobs, something that that time will show that this new police deployment alone will not resolve.
Its almost criminal that Mayor Emanuel and Police Chief McCarthy to take our community on these continued public relations campaigns that these new police deployment are actually going to successfully resolve the criminal element and random acts of violence that plague the south and westsides.
Mark S. Allen
Chairman Of The Board/Acting Executive Director
Black Wall Street Chicago Organization
Chief of Staff To National Chairman Rev. Michael Carter
National Black Wall Street USA
4655 South King Drive, Suite 203
Chicago, Illinois 60653