Following Wednesday’s City Council meeting announcing two new ordinances under the Fines and Fee’s Initiative, Mayor Lightfoot responded to Donald Trump’s repeated attacks on her leadership and recent crime in Chicago. Trump recently announced that he would send a “surge” of hundreds of Federal Agents to Chicago to combat violent crime. Trump recently sent Federal agents to Portland, Oregon, which set off riots, demonstrations and accusations that the agents were violating citizens’ rights.
“That’s not democracy what we saw unfold in the streets of Portland. That’s what we call tyranny and dictatorship, and we aren’t having it in Chicago…I’ve been clear we don’t need federal troops, we don’t need unnamed secret federal agents roaming around the streets of Chicago taking our residents without just cause and violating their basic constitutional rights…”-Mayor Lightfoot
Lightfoot said she would not hesitate to take the President to court over any unconstitutional actions. She also stressed that the federal agents, not troops, are expected to work in partnership with Federal Prosecutors. The agents sent to Chicago would be FBI, DEA, and ATF under the supervision of US Attorney John Lausch. Federal agents will work within the existing infrastructure of those agencies working on existing cases. However, she did not put it past the President to try something other than a partnership and remained cautious when asked if she supported the additional resources.
“If those agents are here to actually work in partnership and support, plugging into existing infrastructures and not trying to play police in our streets, that may add value, but it’s too soon to tell…we’ll have to see what materializes…”-Mayor Lightfoot
When asked about the possible additional funding to support law enforcement efforts, the mayor was skeptical. Trump previously offered aid in exchange for abandoning Chicago as a sanctuary city, an exchange Mayor Lightfoot vehemently rejected. “We will never ever retreat from the fact that we are a welcoming sanctuary city…we aren’t going to have someone dangle money in front of us and compromise our values Lightfoot said.
She was angered by Trump’s mentioning of some of the victims of this week’s mass shooting at a funeral home and called it a “political stunt.”
“…he’s trying to divert attention from the fact that he has failed leadership on the handling of COVID-19. He has failed! He has failed! He has failed!-Mayor Lightfoot
She pressed and challenged Trump to focus on gun reform and reducing the number of guns in the streets. She accused the President of failing to lead and come up with real solutions regarding gun control. “We need universal background checks, we need to close gun show loopholes, and we need to empower ATF to go after gun dealers who are constantly selling guns to straw purchasers and gang members whose guns then wind up on our streets…The President doesn’t want to face the tough calls and be a real leader on things that could actually make our communities safe.
Lori Lightfoot went on to say; the President doesn’t care, he fundamentally doesn’t care, he doesn’t get it. What he cares most about is himself.
Danielle Sanders is a freelance writer living in Chicago. Find her on social media @Blkwidowsweb and www.blkwidowsweb.