According to a post from the Chicago Sun Times, our city police horses from the Mounted Unit will get their very own “riot gear” in preparation for the NATO summit in May.
The riot gear will be custom made and it’s unclear exactly how the horses will appear with full gear. The city is currently taking bids.
Ironically, or perhaps dangerously, this announcement eerily coincides with the release of the new hit show Full Metal Jousting on the History Channel. The show attempts to recreate an actual jousting tournament, and gives the audience a taste of how this medieval equestrian sport rivaled football in today’s popularity. The “knights,” all with real jobs, wear 80 pounds of stainless steel armor. They slightly look like characters from the movie Thor, or less accurately, Awesom-O from South Park. More significantly, the horses are also strapped with intimidating full face shields, wide breast plates, and side guards. With armor, the horses can literally withstand the blow of an 11 foot lance delivered by a mounted “knight.”
Every Chicagoan should fear the possibility Mayor Emanuel is a fan of this show.
If he is a fan, it may prove too tempting for the Mayor to not at least give Full Metal Jousting a courtesy call about the best riot gear for horses. What better way to project his power, his “badassness,” than to unleash the Mounted Unit onto the streets of Chicago in full medieval regalia. If there’s one Mayor in the country bold enough to do so, it’s ours.
Everyone in this city should be able to imagine Mayor Emanuel arriving at Daley Plaza on a sunny May afternoon in a replica 10th century covered wagon adorned with Irish tapestry, and being pulled by six well-brushed Clydesdales; behind him follow the Mounted Unit in Full Metal Jousting armor
The NATO and G8 protesters would be caught off guard. The protesters may even initially think the whole scene is a mocking sketch of elected officials. They may even approach mounted police officers and assume they’re an old friend from a previous riot or from last year’s Burning Man. The cheerfulness in the air will slowly dissipate, however, once the protestors realize the calamity of the situation. Then, inevitably, as with the case at almost every Lollapalooza, a drunk or unruly protestor will summon his inner fratboy and take a swing at one of the horses. This will end painfully for the protester.
It all hinges on the decision of the Mayor.