The Boiling Point?
Chicago Police Officers Going On Two Years Without A Contract
With intense media attention focusing on Cook County State’s Attorney Kimberly Foxx for her role in the Jussie Smollett case, the real story of what her administration has become went unnoticed in the local media.
And that was probably intentional.
The reason is that Foxx has been the darling of the Chicago media, elected after a concerted local and national progressive push to maintain the doomed narrative of rampant police misconduct and racism that has built the house of cards that is commonly referred to in the city as the Combine.
What a heroic job Foxx has done, pushing these claims as the narrative collapses under the weight of rampant violence, key legal developments, and ominous signs that the police are being asked to maintain law and order under inhumane, impossible conditions and policies.
How heroic a job? Well, consider sources that indicate Ricardo Rodriguez, a leading member of the Spanish Cobras street gang—a gang that has terrorized Chicagoans for decades—was likely released from federal immigration custody last week.
Rodriguez’s status is shrouded in mystery, and intentionally so. The reason is that the Chicago media that has transformed itself into Foxx’s personal public relations outlet would never give fair or full coverage to the Rodriguez saga. How could it?
The background: Rodriquez was convicted and sentenced to 90 years for the 1995 murder of a homeless man. He was a lawful permanent resident of the U.S. at the time of his arrest, trial, and jury conviction.
But Rodriguez hit the legal lottery while in prison. After being elected, Foxx reversed the policy of her predecessor, Anita Alvarez, on a slew of cases in which offenders like Rodriguez claimed they were the victims of police misconduct and coerced into confessing to murders.
Rodriguez’s conviction was eventually tossed, strengthened by witness retractions, even though witness retractions are under fire throughout the city in a host of supposed wrongful convictions. After his conviction was dropped, Rodriguez was, thankfully, not released to the streets. He was taken into federal custody because he wasn’t a citizen and there were all those pesky felony convictions on his record from his years of moving up the ranks of the Spanish Cobras.
That would be the same Spanish Cobra gang whose members have recently been convicted of the brutal murder of Chicago Police Officer Clifton Lewis in 2011, who was gunned down as he worked an off-duty security position at a convenience store.
No problem for the anti-police crusaders, progressive narrative builders. Foxx rode to the rescue once again. Prosecutors in her office marched into criminal court and vacated without explanation two twenty-year-old felony convictions against Rodriguez, vacations that paved the way for Rodriguez to remain in the country as his attorneys pursue his multimillion-dollar lawsuit for his “wrongful conviction.”
And those attorneys? Some of them work for a law firm whose members, along with radical progressive George Soros, contributed to Foxx’s election campaign. Foxx’s election was part of a national campaign by the radical left to impose their people in key prosecutor spots, a move to fight the system from within.
But a prosecutor going to bat for a law firm that supported her in her election campaign? A prosecutor going to such lengths to help release a gang member at the very time his fellow gang members are being convicted of killing a police officer? Well, from the keyboard pounders and camera talking heads who call themselves investigative reporters, there was nothing.
In the wake of this conspiratorial silence, a large question is looming: How does one be a police officer in Chicago? From some outlaw corner of the city, a few writers have the guts to hint at this question.
A week ago, a group surrounded two cops on the West Side trying to make an arrest and threatened them. The offender escaped. Tribunecolumnist John Kass observed accurately:
If the cops had fired their weapons, news media would have been all over them, metaphorically skinning them alive. Politicians would have demanded their heads. Democratic presidential candidates, and the two campaigning for mayor, would have held repeated news conferences.
You’re damn right they would have. In writing this, though, Kass ignores the fact that it would have been his paper more than any other leading the chorus against the police officers had they used their weapons, just as hisTribune championed the narrative that three members of the police department conspired to cover up the Laquan McDonald shooting. Like so many Tribune narratives, it crashed on the rocks of a courtroom where evidence actually matters. The three men were acquitted of all charges, despite the Tribune once prattling about the criminal case against them being an “allegory” of our time.
No, Kass ignores the profound influence of the Tribune’s thirty-year crusade against the police at his paper, the vast poisoning of the jury pool that has taken shape in Chicago. How vast? Consider that a Cook County jury awarded $5.1 million dollars to the family of an offender who was shot by police after pointing a gun at the officer. Despite a gun being recovered, the jury bought the claims that the man was unarmed.
Any narrative, no matter how baseless, can now fly in the Cook County courts. Thank you, Eric Zorn. Great job, Dan Hinkel, Jason Meisner, and Megan Crepeau. And if that narrative still won’t fly on its first takeoff attempts, Kimberly Foxx will be there to chip in and make sure it does.
Such is the reality of the city’s political, legal, and media dark inner workings.
On the street, it is a different story. There, the police are hardly the crooked, racist thugs Kass’s Tribuneis always railing about. On the street, the innocent are slaughtered, the children conscripted into gangs. Here, violence against police officers is chronic. They are being shot, beaten with clubs, surrounded, their lives threatened.
But at least Kass alludes to the most compelling reality of Chicago: the city is becoming unpoliceable.
Which brings us to the mental toll policing in Chicago takes. This, too, the media will never put in perspective. There is discussion in the media about PTSD and the horrible morale among officers, the depression many officers experience, but the media will never admit the toll their false narratives against the police take on the mental health of first responders, even in the wake of so many police suicides.
And so it goes. In the face of all this, Ricardo Rodriguez is now likely free to resume his career as a Spanish Cobra. How, then, does one be a police officer in Chicago when the prosecutor who is supposed to be working with the police is actually working to free members of a gang that kills police officers without the slightest regard?
The elected officials of City and County went to bat for Rodriguez, getting him out of prison, then working behind the scenes so that he can remain in the country. Chicago, after all, desperately needs more Spanish Cobras.
And the elected officials of Chicago, they are going on two years without even having a contract with police officers.
Long, hot summer, indeed.