The Complete Letter from Alabama City Councilman To Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel referring Wallace "Gator" Bradley to help stop Chicago Violence
OFFICE OF THE CITY COUNCIL
CITY OF BIRMINGHAM
7TH NORTH TWENTIETH STREET .'BIRMINGHAM. ALABAMA 35203
(205) 254-2294 / Fax (205) 254-2603
August 27, 2012
The Honorable Rahm Emmanuel
Office of the Mayor 121 North LaSalle Street Chicago City Hall,
4th Floor Chicago, Illinois 60602
Dear Mayor Emmanuel:
I am writing to offer my support to Wallace "Gator" Bradley; a native son of Chicago who is actively working with me on gang prevention and youth initiatives in Birmingham, Alabama. Wallace is exploring the possibility of returning to Chicago in the near future and thought it best that I share some of the success we have experienced working together on "100 Days of Non - Violence", assisting eligible felons with regaining their voting rights, and other strategic, community based partnerships.
The "100 Days of Non Violence" is a curriculum based program that uses the Kingian (i.e. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.) theory of non-violence to guide students towards alternative dispute resolution and away from acts of violence that include, but not limited to: the use of weapons, physical violence, and inappropriate language. Before Wallace was allowed to work with this program, my team and I wanted to know how he may be able to enhance a team that included experienced professionals, post graduate scholars, licensed social workers, and clergy. Wallace simply retorted, "I cannot replace such a well-qualified group of professionals, but they should be willing to learn from me and my experiences."
Wallace understands gang culture and has access to its leadership, whether incarcerated or not, and surprisingly his unique set of experiences and skills have become essential to our work. In fact, some of our work with students led us to highly sensitive information that we turned over to local law enforcement officials - leading to some arrests and criminal prosecutions. In addition, Wallace has inspired some students, who were heading down a destructive path, to seek collegiate opportunities that were previously ignored.
Some may oppose working with Wallace for one reason or another, but our challenges are too great to leave him without some level of responsibility. We appreciate having him on our team because we want every available resource working towards improving our schools, reducing heinous crimes, and building a better Birmingham for all. I am encouraged by our work with youth in Birmingham and stand ready to provide additional information as the need arises.