‘Disaster in the making’: Incoming Chicago mayor’s solution to crime as troubling as critics feared

Chicago Mayor-elect Brandon Johnson has some very leftist ideas on how to deal with the city’s enormous crime problems.

Indeed, appearing on CBS News this Thursday morning for an interview, he went through them one by one, and according to critics, the ideas were very underwhelming.

Watch part one of the interview below:

Johnson started the interview with a word salad about how “critical investments” are needed to resolve the city’s crime epidemic.

“Unfortunately, for too long the people of Chicago and quite frankly people all over the country have been given a false choice on how we actually deal with public safety. What our campaign proved is that you can actually demonstrate in a real way how critical investments are the necessary dynamics in order to prevent crime. I mean, that’s the ultimate goal — to prevent crime,” he said.

He continued by admitting that he and his wife live in a troubled neighborhood, which is presumably a good sign because it means his policies will have a direct effect on his own family.

“As I indicated in my victory speech, you know, my wife and I are raising three beautiful children on the west side of Chicago. It’s a beautiful neighborhood. It’s the Austin community, but it is arguably one of the most violent neighborhoods in the entire city. And so, you know, I have tremendous incentive to make sure that not just my neighborhood and my children are safe, but to make sure that the people of Chicago are safe,” he said.

Fair enough.

Johnson then finally got to explaining what he’d meant by critical  investments.

“The way we [keep everybody safe] is by investing in people. There’s a direct correlation between youth employment and violence reduction. There’s a tremendous correlation between providing mental health care their services and reducing crime,” he said.

“You know, this notion that the only way in which, you know, we can protect the people of Chicago and the people of of our country is this notion of being tough, you know. What is required in this moment is for us to be smart about our investments, to be critical in our thinking, and then to make sure that what we’re doing actually works,” he added.

After this long introduction, one of the hosts then asked him why he “retreated” from his former support of the “defund the police” movement.

He initially replied by essentially saying the “defund the police” movement “didn’t work.”

“Well, it’s not so much a retreat. It’s more of having a better understanding of the impetus behind that hashtag. You know, look, there were organizers all over the country who wanted to work within the confines of the system, whether it was body cam cameras, dashboard cameras, all of these sort of implementations of formations that would ostensibly provide more accountability within law enforcement, and it didn’t work,” he said.

Watch part two of the interview below:

Continuing where he left off, Johnson then delivered another long word salad in which he invoked the names of criminals like Mike Brown, who was fatally shot while resisting arrest, and Freddie Gray, who died while in police custody.

He also mentioned Trayvon Martin, a black boy who was killed by a citizen (not the police) during a neighborhood dispute that occurred in 2012, and Quintonio LeGrier, a troubled teen who died after an officer who “reasonably” feared for his life opened fire.

“You know, I’ll never forget the profound words former President Barack Obama, you know, when he said that if he were to have a son, he would have looked like Trayvon. And then you fast forward to Mike Brown, Freddie Gray, you know, Quintonio LeGrier here in Chicago who was having a mental health crisis, and the only equipment on the scene were guns and he’s dead, and Betty Jones’s neighbor who came to his defense is dead. And so this is really about making sure that people understand the context of the level of frustration when you see that type of brutalization over and over again,” he said.

One of the hosts then asked Johnson whether he believes more or less money is needed for policing. He replied by somewhat dodging the question and talking about putting more money in “areas of needs.”

“Well, it’s more money towards the areas of needs, right, and as I mentioned before, you know, we’re working to double the amount of young people that we hire. Not just for summer jobs, but for year-round positions,” he said.

Continuing his response, Johnson then seemed to suggest that he wants social workers and first responders responding to crimes, not the police.

“One of the things that I think is actually quite fascinating about our position here in Chicago, we’ve been pushing this ordinance called treatment, not trauma. In essence, first responders, social workers, counselors, EMT, these individuals which show up to cause that require those type of interventions,” he said.

“In fact, in Chicago almost 40 percent of the 9-1-1 calls are mental health crises. We’re asking police officers to do their job and someone else’s. Like, that’s not strategic. In fact, sixty percent of the violence that happens in the city of Chicago, it occurs in six percent of the cities,” he added.

Listen to part three of the interview below:

For the final leg of the interview, one of the hosts asked the newly elected mayor how he intends to pay for his unconventional plans given as he doesn’t want to raise property taxes.

He replied by repeating the sort of class warfare rhetoric popularized by former President Barack Hussein Obama and current President Joe Biden.

“What we’re going to have to do is to find the revenue from individuals who have the means to actually contribute to a safer city. Look, the bottom line is this — seventy percent of large corporations in the city of Chicago in the state of Illinois did not pay a corporate tax,” he said.

“And it’s that type of restraint on our budget that has caused the type of disinvestment that has led to poverty that has led to violence,” he added.

Based on Johnson’s replies, many critics are not so sure about Chicago’s future.



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