It pains me to agree with the NRA but I've got to support the passage of concealed carry in the state of Illinois.
According to Chicago Tribune reporter Peter Nickeas' Twitter feed, the first ten days of March brought 51 people shot city wide with 9 of those shootings being fatal.
It doesn't take a statistician to know that those aren't encouraging numbers going into the warm weather months.
While Mayor Emanuel may have delivered on his campaign promise to put over 1,000 more police officers on the streets, backlogs in Englewood and shutting down a part of Clark Street this past weekend clearly underscore the need for additional personnel.
Clearly the Chicago Police Department has their hands full right now.
Criminals who are emboldened by the lack of officers and the litigious nature of our society have only just begun to run roughshod over those of us who aren't predators. With the resources they have, I feel the police are doing a good job.
But make no mistake; they aren't there to protect you.
With these jokers taking potshots at uniformed police officers they can barely protect themselves---and they're armed.
A few days before Christmas and on the same day as Deshawn Moody's killing, one of my neighbors was robbed in front of our home. It was the second such robbery in the past 3 years.
He wisely did what anyone of us would have done in his situation. He gave up the money.
Aside from the obvious, what bothers me about this crime is that I was probably only a few minutes ahead of him coming in the door.
He drove and I walk.
He saw the four assholes loitering near the corner of our building but didn't listen to his inner voice and circle until they were gone. I can only imagine if he had, I would have been their victim.
What could I have done against four young men? Where could I have run to on my street? Screaming would have meant a possible bullet. What would have been my best defense?
So as our unseasonably warm winter gives way to an unseasonably warm spring, many law abiding citizens will have to make a choice to run afoul of the law or properly defend themselves.
I hate guns. I hate the destruction they leave behind. I hate that people have poor conflict resolution skills and shoot first and ask questions later.
I hate that I'm forced to even weigh the consequences of making such a choice.
Hopefully the State of Illinois will make it easy on me one day where I won't have to risk jail or being shot to death.
A gun is no guarantee, but with proper training the playing field can be leveled.
For now, I just have my FOID card and a prayer.