John Feehery: Speaking Engagements

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Where Is Obama On Crime?

Posted on September 3, 2010
Only in America could gang-bangers have a press conference and complain about police harassment.

That is exactly what several members of some of Chicago’s most violent gangs did yesterday.

On the same day that President Obama’s Justice Department sued an Arizona Sheriff for harassing illegal immigrants, gang kingpins met with the press to say that the cops don’t give them enough respect.

Here is what CBS news reported on the subject:

gang leaders news conference in Chicago

Self-identified gang leaders hold a news conference in Chicago, Sept. 2. 2010. (CBS)



“At a news conference organized by self-identified gang members Thursday morning, several speakers complained that police and city officials do not respect them, and that the only way to curb violence is to provide jobs and improve their community. The self-described current and former gang members held a news conference at the Columbus Park Refectory, at 5701 W. Jackson Blvd. on the city's West Side.  "You say it's gangs, drugs and guns. We say we need jobs, opportunities and contracts," said Reginald Akeem Berry Sr., who identified himself as a former gang member. "That's the resolution."

But is that really the resolution?  How can jobs be created in parts of Chicago that are more violent that Baghdad or Kabul?

The President’s home-town has had a very bad year when it comes to crime, drugs and murder.   So far this year, 307 people have been murdered in Chicago.  More than 80% of those killed have been African-American.  More than 80% of the murderers are also African-American.

You would think that President Obama, who is not only the nation’s first African-American President but also a proud Chicago native, would say something, anything, to get these gang-bangers to stop killing one another.

But, when it comes to crime and punishment, about the only thing the President has said throughout his term is that the Boston cop who busted his friend, Skip Gates, was stupid.

The drug war is raging in Chicago, but the response of the Justice Department is to stop enforcing our drug laws and look the other way when gang bangers bring drugs to the city.

The President shelved his National Drug Control Policy Director’s plan to enforce our drug laws last year for five months while he worked to pass health care, and when he eventually allowed its release, he said not a word about it.

The drug war has destabilized our southern war and is destabilizing our biggest cities.  When a drug war rages and when gang-bangers threaten the security of a community, it is awfully hard to create jobs.

I, for one, think it is a tragedy that close to three hundred African-American kids have been killed in the City of Chicago through gun violence stemming from drug violence.  I, for one, am not satisfied that this number is slightly better than last year’s murder total.  I, for one, would like the President to pay more attention to what is happening in our cities, and maybe less attention to what is happening elsewhere in the world.

And, I, for one, would like to hear the President say some good things about the cops who do their best to protect our neighborhoods from the death merchants who shoot to kill as they ply their evil drugs.