From Chicagoland‘s Lee McCollum Jr. being shot in a drive-by to 46 people being shot during one weekend in July, Chicago, colloquially now known as Chiraq, is infamous for its gun and gang violence. In a meeting with Chicago Police Superintendent Garry F. McCarthy and community leaders, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel indignantly explained that the city’s kids “only get heard when there is a shot, be it a basketball shot or a bullet shot.” But some people may actually be listening.
Earlier this year, Illinois Governor Pat Quinn connected with Mayor Rahm Emanuel and explained he “would help in any way [he] could to combat violence in the city.” Since then, seven officers from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) were sent to Chicago to help 45 officers who were already stationed there. According to CNN, 40 Illinois state troopers are expected to flood Chicago’s South Side within the next week. A hopeful Mayor Emanuel said that he was “proud to bring so many partners together to focus on real solutions that will help ensure every child in every neighborhood has the safety and opportunities they deserve.”
But will this be enough?
Though it’s easy to blame those who are committing the crimes, many of the troubles can be attributed to state officials’ negligence of the area as well. McCarthy blamed the state’s “lax gun laws,” before he removed 150 officers from their administrative jobs and sent them to the streets.
As of June 29, 880 shootings had been recorded— a rate of about five shootings per day. This surge of police protection is long overdue.