Martin Preib

Award-winning Writer





Another Violent Weekend In Chicago, Another Call For Police Oversight...

Once again, the alliance of the local media with the powerful anti-police lobby has reared its head in Chicago, after another weekend of violent crime swept through the city.

The June 16 Sun Times editorial, entitled Chicago’s Road to Police Reform Begins and Ends with Trust, and the column by Laura Washington, Mayor Emanuel’s Only Credible Option For Police Reform: Consent Decree. The two opinion pieces were published in the wake of a federal lawsuit calling for federal oversight of the police department.

The plaintiffs who filed the lawsuit include Black Lives Matter Chicago and more than a dozen lawyers from Chicago and New York, including Craig Futterman from the University of Chicago.

Rehashing the tired trope of an out of control, racist police department, the Sun Times ignored what the lawsuit truly is, a move by Futterman and his fellow plaintiffs to conduct an end around Attorney General Jeff Sessions, who rejected the demands of a federal monitor in a DOJ report that had been authored under the Obama administration.

Consider the language contained in the lawsuit itself. This is how Black Lives Matter is described in the federal lawsuit:

Black Lives Matter Chicago works to end state violence and criminalization of Black communities by deconstructing the white supremacist, capitalist patriarchy.

It must be quite a surprise for all the African American, Latino, Asian, Arab, and female police officers to learn they are part of a “white supremacist, capitalist patriarchy.”

Nevertheless, most cops know this bizarre, sanitized rhetoric about Black Lives Matter is nonsense. The police throughout the country have witnessed firsthand the rioting and violence that attends BLM demonstrations and the chants at these events for death to the police. That media outlets in Chicago could posit their claims without giving any attention to the overwhelming evidence that BLM is not a civil rights organization, but a civil disorder organization, is shocking.

The day after BLM and Futterman filed their lawsuit, President Trump made a speech in Miami. Trump brought up a convicted police killer, Assata Shakur, also known as Joanne Chesimard, hiding out in Castro’s Cuba. Shakur is a former Black Panther and Black Liberation Army member who killed a police officer and robbed banks before she escaped from prison and fled to Cuba in the early 1980s.

Shakur is a hero to the leaders of the BLM movement. Here is an essay from the group in the wake of the death of Fidel Castro:

“A final lesson is that to be a revolutionary, you must strive to live in integrity. As a Black network committed to transformation, we are particularly grateful to Fidel for holding Mama Assata Shakur, who continues to inspire us." 

From The National Review:

“How many despots and murderers must Black Lives Matter praise before it’s consigned to the fringe of American life? How many riots and murders must it incite — often through lies and hoaxes? Millions of Americans grieve for our nation’s continued racial divisions and long for reconciliation. Black Lives Matter longs for conflict and fosters division. It supports murderers. It remains astonishing that the Democratic Party, the academic Left, and the mainstream media continue to respect it and provide it a platform for its vicious hate."

In his Miami speech, Trump called on Cuba to “return the fugitives from American justice, including the return of the cop-killer Joanne Chesimard.”

The Sun-Times woefully lets Futterman and BLM off the hook when they posit their lawsuit based upon a claim of a pattern and practice of police misconduct.

The Sun-Times is all too aware that two federal lawsuits are already winding their way through the judicial system, both of which allege a pattern of misconduct in key wrongful conviction cases going back decades. These exonerations were based upon claims of police misconduct. Now a body of evidence points to the strong possibility that truly guilty killers and rapists have been set free from prison and the police officers wrongfully vilified.

While the Sun-Times is all too willing to echo their claims of police misconduct, the newspaper has initiated a virtual news blackout on this alleged pattern of misconduct in the wrongful conviction movement itself.

Shame on the Sun Times for doing so.  

How ironic that even as Futterman announced his lawsuit to the media last week, a gunman was attacking congressmen at a baseball field. The gunman, armed with a rifle, would have likely “massacred” many congressmen and spectators, according to witnesses, were it not for the courageous response of Capitol Hill police officers, who, though wounded, shot the assailant.

This is the kind of courage displayed by police officers all over the country every day, including in Chicago. Against the back drop of such courage, Futterman and the Black Lives Matter blather about “white supremacy” and “capitalist patriarchy” is false and offensive.

Last weekend, more than fifty people were shot in Chicago. In order to truly protect the innocent and fight violent crime, the police and the citizens need a media willing to be guided by something other than their own bias.