The Insurrection in Chicago
Almost exactly a year ago, race riots paralyzed more than a dozen of America's great cities, from New York to Seattle. The smoke hasn't gone away.
As we should have learned from the last episode of urban rioting during the late 1960s, the devastating adverse effects from rage and lawlessness are long-lasting and borne mostly by minorities, immigrant communities and the poor.
Amazingly, the media had rarely investigated what really happened last summer when criminal gangs seized control of cities under the guise of racial justice. The politicians cynically celebrated the violent protests as "mostly peaceful" and gave cover to the assailants by glorifying them as "social justice warriors."
Thankfully, four reporters at the Chicago Tribune have investigated what really happened in the once great "city that works" and the devastating effects that still are felt. It's harrowing and Pulitzer-worthy material.
Written and reported by Todd Lighty, Gary Marx, Christy Gutowski and William Lee, we urge a full reading, but here are the lowlights:
In just a few days, there were 15 homicides and 53 shooting victims. More than 2,100 businesses were looted, 71 buildings were set on fire and looters stole more than 700,000 prescription pills from drug stores.
Businesses suffered more than $165 million in damages, "though the true cost is certainly much higher."
Mayor Lori Lightfoot had no clue what was coming, and her response was indefensibly feeble. She did not want the National Guard, even as the city burned.
The city's inspector general issued a scathing report, which portrays Lightfoot as woefully unprepared, as were other mayors. Downtown businesses were destroyed.
"I thought, 'I'm a Black-owned business. They're not going to bother me,'" said Howard Bolling, owner of the Roseland Pharmacy at 11254 S. Michigan Ave.