I must say that in the last week I was surprised at the amount of media coverage in Chicago that was given to the discovery of an Alligator in the Humbolt Park Lagoon. Every media outlet feverishly reported Humbys every sighting. One would have thought Godzilla or even the Loch Ness monster had arrived in Chicago. The beast was reported to be at least five-foot-long, but not to worry, Chicago Bob (our very own Crocidile Dundee)was dispatched to the scene to trap the creature before he devoured any of Chicago's population.
As it turned out Bob for some reason or another was not having any luck and Chicago was forced to import an Alligator hunter from Florida where Alligators are as common as corrupt politicians in Chicago. Sure enough by the fourth day, the beast was snared and was even accorded it's very own press conference. As you can see by the lead photo the reports of the creature being over 5 foot seemed to be greatly exaggerated. Old PT Barnum was right again,(there are suckers born every minute) for sure the Circus came to Chicago for at least 4 days anyway.
In Florida, Alligator sightings are as common as mosquitos, the one above in the photo was taken by my wife while she was out jogging, it failed to even get a mention between neighbors. They are common on Golf Courses, sunning themselves or lurking around water holes, the only time they get any attention is when they wind up in someone's kitchen or garage or when a human gets too careless and pays a price. Chicago's Allegator had another effect that may have gone unnoticed it was such a sensation it provided a much-needed distraction from some of the Citys more unpleasant happenings.
Newly elected Mayor Lightfoot has made a point of meeting with the top Police Command every Monday in what she calls accountability sessions. Since she was out of town this Monday she held a press conference on Tuesday and addressed yet again another violent weekend in which 9 people were murdered and 34 were wounded. She stated she was afraid the Police are losing the streets. Not exactly a startling eye-opener to anyone who has been paying attention to Chicago's epidemic of violence the last 7 years or so. If in fact, she is saying the Police somehow is behind the routine (by routine I mean look back over the years, nothing changed) slaughter she might want to look in the mirror.
Since her first day as Mayor 58 days ago over 100 souls have been murdered and more than 600 folks have been wounded. It's been her strategies that have dictated the extra cops, the longer library hours, the workshops, the organized sporting events, etc and yet the mayhem continues. Hello! the gangs are not the least bit interested in any of those activities. They have scores to settle, dope to peddle, territory to gain, cars to hijack, robberies to commit. It's incomprehensible to think it would have the least bit effect on the amount of violence. There is no cynicism attached to that it's just plain reality. Years and years ago when I was a young Police officer, I was assigned to Chicago's westside during the Dr. King assassination riots when then a frustrated Mayor Richard J. Daley gave the Police Department orders to shoot to kill arsonists and to wound looters. Imagine that! I did, as a teen ran by me carrying a Gumball Machine.
I learned a lesson from that, mayors are mayors and cops are cops. Unless the current mayor is looking for a scapegoat or simply wants to appoint her own superintendent, in my opinion, it would be wise to let the cops do what they are sworn to do and that is to uphold the law. It's impossible to have it both ways. It's too late for idealism and trying to make sense to vicious thug gang members. Trying to reason with them is like administering medicine to the dead. Playing musical chairs with police Superintendents is not the answer, we've certainly seen that in the last 8 years. None possess a magic wand in stopping killers, trying to be one from a political office as Daley proved is also a potential for disaster. There may not be any more allegators or other distractions, the heat is coming in more ways than one. Chicago needs a plan that includes the Mayor, the Cops, the County Courts, the County prosecutors, and the Federal Government, in other words, invite everyone to the accountability Monday table and have a good look at each other.
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