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It’s not me in “Perspective,” but a mother on the South Side of Chicago who sent me an email about mob violence on the Near North Side. It’s bad there, she says, but worse where she lives — where the police, she says, don’t listen.
“We’re calling all the police over and over again, but the problem is when police don’t come every time we call, or if they come and they roll through and don’t get out of the car, and don’t address the problem,” Stephanie Whitaker explains.
“Our police focus can’t be just downtown right now,” she says. “Our new police chief is gonna have to take a walk into these communities and see what he’s dealing with.”
“I know he’s from out of town, but I suspect he’s gonna have to develop his learning curve very quickly,” Whitaker says.
Whitaker grew up in the Rockwell projects on the South Side. She’s made it in life — a college degree in political science. She says Mayor Emanuel may have to call in the National Guard.
“The police chief and the mayor can’t do it by themselves,” Whitaker says. “They don’t understand the magnitude of what they’re dealing with. These kids are not afraid of the police, one-on-one. They enjoy the fact that police are not going to really do anything.”
What would she have the National Guard do?
“We need to still things in the city so that the mayor can focus on the big picture and the police can restore order so the people feel safe,” Whitaker says.
Can’t blame her for wanting to feel safe and her children and neighbors to feel safe. Can’t blame her for speaking-out and wanting to be heard.