The nation might want to look to the city of Chicago as an example of what to expect when police are not only demonized, but defunded.
With police officers finding themselves under the gun as they try to enforce the law, while ensuring that they get to go home to their families at the end of the day, there’s a wave of retirements happening around the country as recruiting efforts come up short.
In Chicago, where gun violence approaches historic levels, so too are retirements. Only halfway through the year, the number of officers who have already retired has surpassed all retirements in 2018 and is on track to be the highest figure in history, according to Fox News.
Citing data from the police pension board, the Chicago Sun-Times reported between January and June, 363 officers called it quits and another 56 were expected to retire this month.
The Chicago Police Department has a force of about 13,000 sworn officers, and saw 560 retirements in all of 2020, 475 in 2019 and 339 in 2018, the newspaper said.
Fox News’ Geraldo Rivera cited Mayor Lori Lightfoot in a tweet to say that police are outnumbered by the 117,000 or so gang members in the city by roughly 10 to 1.
11 more murdered in #Chicago. #MayorLoriLightfoot says there are 117,000 gang members vs 12-13,000 cops, Gangsters outnumber cops 10 to 1.
A joint federal, state and local effort urgently needed. Constitutional implementation of stop & frisk, massive use of Rico. #GhettoCivilWar
— Geraldo Rivera (@GeraldoRivera) July 12, 2021
John Catanzara, president of the Chicago police union, told the Sun-Times younger cops who have been with the department under 10 years are also exiting, moving to other police departments because they’re “absolutely miserable.”
The retirement trend isn’t restricted to just the Windy City, as the article noted other cities are seeing the same thing, pointing to New York City, where 2,500 retirements in 2020 nearly doubled the number in 2019.
Alderman Ray Lopez, a frequent critic of Mayor Lightfoot, told the newspaper that police officers “don’t feel appreciated and respected in their home city of Chicago.”
He also said new police reform law makes cops feel they “have come under attack,” and slammed Lightfoot for demoralizing cops and scaring off potential recruits with anti-police rhetoric.
While the mayor tried to claim recently that the city was seeing a downward trend in violent crime, homicides are up 33% so far this year, compared to the same period in 2019.
Over the Fourth of July holiday weekend, at least 100 people were shot and 18 killed.
Back in May, the National Fraternal Order of Police shared a graphic on social media showing big increases in homicide rates in New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Portland, Minneapolis, Philadelphia, and Washington, D.C.
Besides being Democrat-run, the cities embraced the “Defund the Police” movement, according to the FOP.
Any guesses of what these cities have in common?
In addition to having some elected officials that don't do their jobs, the leadership in all of these cities turned the keys over to the "Defund the Police" mob. pic.twitter.com/rF5QLskXqE
— National Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) (@GLFOP) May 25, 2021
There were 788 homicides in Chicago in 2016, the most recent spike, and the total for the first half of this year — 335 homicides — is equal to the homicide count of the first half of 2016, according to NBC News.
Through it all, Lightfoot has looked to blame others. The Democratic mayor blamed surrounding communities for supplying guns to residents — the city has some of the toughest guns laws in the nation. She also said “99%” of the criticism she receives is because she is a gay black woman.
Meanwhile, she has declared that racism is a “public health emergency,” allowing her to redirect millions in Covid funding.
After rejecting an offer for help last year from former President Donald Trump, Lightfoot recently beseeched upon the federal government to help with gun violence, declaring: “This is a national problem.”
On that note, it was just announced that President Biden is sending a federal “strike force” to Chicago and other Democrat cities like New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., to combat violent crime and “illegal gun trafficking.”
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