Playing politics with crime

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First, let me say, ‘Happy New Year,’ and I hope your holiday was pleasant and joyful.

The new year for me came in with some excitement and blessings.

I spent the turn of the calendar with a good childhood friend and her brothers celebrating her 50th birthday with a New Year’s Eve party. And I also had several of my preacher friends pray over me for protective coverage and a productive 2013.

It was symbolic, and my spirit felt calm and my faith renewed during and after the prayer sessions. Thank you for my many blessings God. I’ll continue serving you to my fullest. If I fall short, please forgive me.

Now, I’m sure by now everyone in the country has heard that Chicago topped 500 murders before years’ end. It was an unwanted milestone, but a milestone none the least. That mark of 500 murders in one ‘fiscal cliff year’ had not happened in nearly 10 years in Chi-Town.

But of course, our elected and appointed powers downplayed the stat.

The mayor of Chicago and his sidekick, Police Superintendent Garry¬† McCarthy, used several press briefings to highlight how, “Overall crime in Chicago is down.” As one lady stated in a newspaper interview over the weekend, “That statement is insulting to my intelligence, and I wish they stop.”

What crimes are down?

If you ask aldermen of select wards, they’ll tell you that they’re getting more complaints than previous years about simple crimes like home invasions, garage break-ins, car vandalism and theft, armed robberies and others. So where is crime down, and how does that statement give residents cause for celebration?

This statement made by the mayor and his hired gun is political. It’s made for global soundbites, not really the residents of Chicago. They hope the media pick up those encouraging words and transmit them around the world and to select communities in and around the state of Illinois to show them both in good favor and pressing forward in their respective duties.

But after seeing real time data and seeing real live or dead bodies, 500 to be exact, scattered on blocks near you and me, if they truly believe that crime is down, the two of them must be smoking something, and I want some of that delusional drug.

Now, I know that neither of them are engaged in drug use, so why would they continue to make that ridiculous and misleading statement? It’s strictly politics! It’s what they know best.

They are politicians, and most skew numbers to fit their agenda or either just outright lie for political purposes. Take your pick! Why? For one reason or another, and believe me, they have their reasons, why they would keep expressing that the grass is greener than millions can truly see.

I’ll come to their defense on one issue. Immediate, or what’s called impulsive crimes, are not going to stop! So regardless how many tactics the police and their task force roam hoods, they’ll never be able to cover each block, alley, underground hole or crack in the concrete to stop violent acts from occurring.

Police do not stop crime, they solve crimes. And if the mayor and his chief of police would just be honest and not continue using politics to play with our emotions, we as concerned voters can lend a helping hand. But when they keep saying, ‘they got this’ we let them deal with it alone. When in reality, they can’t handle this crisis alone.

They need people like Tio Hardiman, Mark Carter, Paul, Mark Allen, Kendall Moore, Dr. Chandra Gill, Ameena Mathews, Seron Smith, Diane Latiker, Coby, Dr. Eric Whitaker, Phillip Jackson (Black Star), Phil Jackson from the hip-hop church out west, Bryant Echols, Jito, Lupe Fiasco, Shorty Capone, Chef Cliff Rome, Carla Ogelvy, Lil Diva, Maze Jackson, Tenille Brooks and her husband and so many others who spend their lives mentoring and hiring people from the streets. These are the same people who have access to select communities and who have respect on these blocks.

And if the mayor was, again, honest and truthful, he would tell the people that impulsive crimes– which most are– are unstoppable and should be combated the same way we create strategies for short or long term growth in companies or building roads and buildings.

That means our focus should be on the names listed above and how the city and the mayor’s buddy corporations can use valuable resources to help reach out to the next generation of young people to deter them from a life of criminal activities. Because many of the young lost and confused, criminal minded boys and girls, who’ve already made their play for prison and or death are, sadly, doomed. And unfortunately, there is nothing either of us can do!

The only thing the mayor and his law enforcement tactical units can do is make relevant and irrelevant arrests after crimes have been committed by the lost and confused. But these are only short-term solutions. If law enforcement and law makers are not looking to invest in the future of young people, as well as invest in community leaders in mention, then the crime stat that the mayor and his sidekick keeps detailing as “going down” will only continue to rise!

Peace and one love.

C. Dwayne West is the managing editor of TBTNews, co-founder of Next Generation Leadership Council (NGLC) and executive director of TRUTH 4 Literacy after school mentoring program.

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