A civil (servant) war brews in Chicago

I see Mayor Rahm-bo has utterly infuriated the Chicago police force – again.

Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel today addressed the Chicago City Council in a special meeting called to discuss police accountability, saying the city is facing a “defining moment on the issue of crime and policing, and even the larger issue of truth, justice and race.”

. . .

“We can either be defined by what we have failed to do or what we need to do,” the mayor said, telling the alderman that “nothing can excuse” what happened to McDonald. “We need a painful but honest reckoning of what went wrong … over decades.”

. . .

Emanuel’s address comes days after his top cop stepped down, two more controversial videos were made public and a Department of Justice Investigation was announced.

“Every police officer is sworn to protect life and in the most extreme circumstances, to take life,” Emanuel said. “It may be too much to expect that every officer will always get it right, but it is not too much to expect that we can put the safeguards to ensure police accountability when they get it wrong.”

The mayor also mentioned the police department’s “code of silence,” saying permitting and protecting even the smallest acts of abuse lead to a culture where extreme acts of abuse are more likely.

“We cannot have effective policing if we turn a blind eye to police misconduct,” he said. “Respect must be earned. Respect is a two-way street.”

There’s more at the link.

I agree that the Chicago Police Department has long been a hotbed of corruption, dishonesty and flagrant disregard for civil rights.  Homan Square is perhaps the best-known example, but there are many others.  The city has paid out over half a billion dollars during the past decade to settle lawsuits against it and its police force, and cover its own legal expenses.  Nevertheless, Mayor Emanuel appears to have thrown the entire PD – good officers as well as bad – under the bus in his recent statement.

Unsurprisingly, Chicago cops appear to be royally pissed at him.  We’ve encountered the blog Second City Cop several times before in these pages.  Now a retired PD officer reacts to the Mayor’s assertions.

Rahm completely threw the Department under the bus … His speech was pure unadulterated crap. This statement [was] just f***ing dumb:

Emanuel said he was with a group of young men last weekend, describing them as all having “a history with the criminal-justice system,” but “trying to get on the right path, do the right thing.”

“One young man asked me a simple question that gets to the core of what we’re talking about. He said, ‘Do you think the police would ever treat you the way they treat me?’

“And the answer is no,” Emanuel said. “And that is wrong. And that has to change in this city. That has to come to an end now. No citizen is a second-class citizen in the city of Chicago.”

Do you even know why the answer was “no” Rahm? Do you have a clue? Perhaps it’s because you aren’t driving a ghetto-hoopty ride with one headlight, invalid plates and music jacked up do window rattling volume at all hours? Maybe you aren’t howling gibberish, shoving shoppers, snatching iPhones on Michigan Avenue? Maybe you aren’t hanging out on the corner at all hours, holding an entire neighborhood hostage with your drug sales, threatening, beating, burning the houses of those who complain? Or maybe, just maybe, you aren’t firing weapons at someone who “dissed” you over a rap song, killing the rival dealer or executing 9-year-old kids for who their relative are to the tune of 450 murders and 2,800 wounded.

. . .

A lot has changed since we went through the Academy, especially if Officers are taught how to see souls. We are a reactionary job – how the encounter goes is determined by the subject’s behavior, 99.9 times out of 100, plain and simple. And the last time we saw an “artist” on video, he was punching a Chicago Police Officer in the head and getting charges dropped by the State.

We don’t know how many way to say it, but you have been abandoned by the City. Rahm and the Machine will sacrifice you on the altar of political correctness and not lose a wink of sleep over it. Where does that leave you? Your family? Your kids? Back living with your in-laws while everything you worked for is destroyed for a political game? And when you get out from under, you’re doing what? Something that doesn’t have a stringent background check we suppose.

The criminal element has won. Self initiated police work is a fool’s errand. Every citizen contact you make is immediately suspected of racist undertones. Every observation you make, the ones that make the back of your neck prickle, is subject to review by local, state, federal, IPRA, politician, reverend, lawyer oversight. Every piece of paper you are required to fill out is there to hang you, regardless of what the bosses are tell you.

Again, more at the link.  The comments in particular are breathtaking in their rudeness.

If I were Mayor Emanuel, I’d be a little less confident in the ‘protection’ offered by my Chicago PD security detail from now on . . .


EDITED TO ADD:  Bloviating Zeppelin points out that there are now calls to defund the Chicago PD.  He dares them to do just that.  I think the results of such a move would be . . . interesting . . . in the sense of the Chinese curse!


  1. If there's ever a department that needed a targeted decimation, its Chicago. And that opdit nion is just from reading the intradepartmental corruption posted on second city cop, never mind the other problems.

  2. It is obvious that there are systemic problems in the Chicago PD – it will take an enormous amount of work, and pain, to get rid of them and build a credible professional police force. I doubt the mayor is really willing to do what is necessary to facilitate real change – like many politician, instead of doing the hard work to separate the wheat from the chaff, he will likely oversimplify and paint every officer with a broad brush. Since there are so many officers who are corrupt, brutal, or incompetent, the good officers will be swept up with them – at this point, I'm not certain how or why a good officer would still be working the tough, thankless job that is being a Chicago PD officer.

  3. Defund the police? it might be an interesting experiment in giving the proglodytes what they want. Bit rough on the innocent bystanders, but as our DC classes say, omelets, eggs, stuff happens…

  4. Oh man, I'd love to see Chiraq, Bal'more and a few others defunded, and then sit on the sidelines with popcorn watching the havoc…

  5. I'm surprised that our President hasn't come forward to help his 'friend' out at at bad time in his career. Pretty silent on this, deafening in fact.

  6. This seems a pretty serious "crisis".
    I'm wondering if lizard man can figure a way not to waste it.
    And please… have mercy on those of us who live within a few day's walk of Chicago. Yes, I have a good supply of ammo… but I don't have THAT much.

  7. Man, what a bunch of corrupt whiners.

    Yes, it sucks to be the victim of political maneuvers. THAT is nothing new in Chicago. The CPD has been a corrupt and protected special class forever. They love the free meals, the ability to hassle anyone who doesn't kowtow, the ability to go armed. Now they are targets for retribution and all they can do is whine.

    "Stop working" "slow down" "stay fetal" "more than your job's worth" "work to rule" "don't do any revenue generation" "no proactive" "no special teams"

    Holy crap. Comes a point when the best you can do it let it burn.

    (Former Chicago boy. And damn glad for the "former".)

  8. CPD is no more corrupt than the Mayor's office and the Chicago Political Machine is it? Aren't they BUTT BUDDIES? Plenty of responsibility to go around.

  9. Defunding the police is an interesting idea. T'were not too long ago that NYPD went on semi-strike, and refused to do anything about anything but "serious" (read: malum in se, not malum prohibitum) crimes.

    Murders, rapes, robberies should absolutely be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. I just can't find a need to persecute those who aren't harming others.

  10. Nobody likes a whiner. Chicago deserves their PD. It's a good thing the City and the State have such reasonable gun laws so the citizens can defend themselves. what? no? I got that wrong? The citizen are not permitted guns to defend themselves from their own corrupt cops and the other criminals? That's criminal! Who kicked Illinois out of the United States?

  11. I don't think Peel's idea of policing can exist in corrupt city. Every institution run by the city and county are corrupt. Federal attempts at clean up have been mostly PR exercises.
    I think the only answer will come as city and state are bankrupt. There will be massive layoffs, and end of the current contracts for employees and contractors. That may provide a window for improvement, or it may give final push for honest business to leave the state.

  12. The two instances I'm aware of when the cops went away for some reason (Phoenix (?) Arizona in the '70s(?) strike and in Josephine County OR in the early 2000's they went on a major slow-down (nobody at all in the office to even answer the phone midnight – 8 AM)to protest funding) the violent crime rates fell precipitously.

    The citizenry knew they were on their own, proceeded to lock and load accordingly, and the would-be criminals found it within themselves to correctly add 2+2, deciding it would be a spectacularly good time to keep a low profile. In both cases empowered people led to a "rethink" by the associated uniforms, and more than a few personnel changes.

  13. Just read an interview with a Danish psychologist about the problems Denmark is having with criminal Muslim youth. He blames it on culture, i.e. what they believe and what we believe are as different as night and day. I'm thinking Chicago and most other big cities have a similar problem with their problem children.

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