On Thursday, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel proposed his solution to Chicago’s gun violence which includes many different approaches: from hiring more cops to patrol the street to initiating job training and mentorship programs.
“When a six year-old girl playing on her porch with her family is shot, or the son of a police officer home from college on summer break is murdered on his front stoop, or an anti-violence activist is gunned down while playing video games at his friend’s house, or an Army veteran who mentors at-risk youth at the YMCA is killed in his car at night, our hearts are torn,” Emanuel said.
“For all the things that make Chicago great, for all the things that make us proud to call ourselves Chicagoans, the violence that is happening corrodes our core.”
“No matter who you are, what your background is, where you live in Chicago, this fight belongs to all of us,” the mayor said. “You give the kids of Chicago a good positive moral choice where they can have a future, or a negative one, our kids will pick the positive, good one.”
The speech had been much hyped by an administration that has been dogged in Emanuel’s second term by both by protests against police shootings and a stubbornly rising murder rate.
But Emanuel did not elaborate on a funding source for new police officers — estimated at $134 million in just the first year of a two-year hiring push — though he said the city had raised half the money needed to provide mentoring for eighth, ninth and tenth-graders in Chicago’s 20 most dangerous neighborhoods, with donations coming from Exelon, Peoples Gas and sandwich chain owner Jimmy John Liautaud.
Chicago saw fifty four shootings resulting in nine deaths over the weekend.