It is an accepted but lamented fact of life among police officers that in order to rise on the promotional ladder, one must endorse the political fashions currently in favor among the city’s politicians. And the higher one ascends on that ladder, the more convincingly one must do so. As a consequence, reflecting the governing principles of almost any city you can name, most police chiefs are liberals, or at least pretend to be with a passing level of feigned sincerity.
But this creates a problem within a police department, to wit, a division in the rank structure between those at or near the top who adopt the leftist nostrums of the politicians, and those at the bottom who must go out onto the streets each day and confront the very real problems engendered by those very same leftist nostrums.
There exists no more vivid example of this than the city of Chicago, where Hillary Clinton received 84 percent of the 2016 presidential vote, and where there hasn’t been a Republican mayor since 1931. Between Friday afternoon and Monday morning, 74 people were shot in the city,12 of them fatally. In one seven-hour span, from about midnight Saturday to about 7:00 a.m. Sunday, 41 people were shot, five of whom died.
These spasms of violence are sadly characteristic of Chicago, or at least parts of it. And equally as routine as the weekend violence are the Monday press conferences at which Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson put on their angry (or sad) faces and denounce the perpetrators and talk about how the mayhem is “unacceptable.” “What happened this weekend did not happen in every neighborhood in Chicago,” said Emanuel, “but it is unacceptable [that] it happened in any neighborhood in Chicago.”
A question for the mayor: If it really is unacceptable, why do you continue to accept it?
He’ll never answer that question, but the answer is that for him, facing re-election as he is, it’s politically untenable to take the steps necessary to stop it.
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