Leef: History, bad leadership, anger fuel Chicago's explosion of violence
Major changes need to happen at the state level to reduce violence in Chicago, Dr. Jeffrey Leef, Republican candidate for the 7th District U.S. House seat, said.
Democrats have had 100 years to put their plans in place, Leef said. The results are that Chicago has the worst public school system in the country, but the highest murder and other crime rates. Illinois has the worst unemployment rates for blacks in the nation, and in Chicago, black adults are seven times more likely than whites to be neither working nor going to school, Leef said.
“All this was achieved by the Illinois Democratic Machine and their politics and policies,” Leef told West Cook News.
The stage in Chicago was set for violence in the early to mid-1900s, when millions of Southern blacks moved to Northern states seeking employment, better education and the hope of living a life they were denied in the South -- primarily by white Democrats, Leef said.
Initially, Southern blacks were hired to fill factory jobs, but over time, racism and economic exclusion won. Blacks were segregated into small, concentrated communities and excluded from high-paying jobs by unions, and public school choices were limited. White liberal elites, claiming to do what was best for African-Americans, doomed the neediest by discouraging ambitions and encouraging blacks to accept charity, Leef said.
“This, of course, bred tremendous anger, especially in black males," Leef said. "Combine racism, lack of opportunity, bad schools in a concentrated area, and the government essentially set the stage for violence,” Leef said. “To reverse this trend, the federal government needs to stop helping.”
Leef said he challenges anyone to name a governmental agency or program that isn't a financial disaster or that hasn't achieved the opposite of what it intended to do. What is increasing in Chicago is anger, which has led to more crime, in a city that continues to be one of the most segregated cities in the nation, Leef said.
Chicago has a severe shortage of police officers compared with New York and Los Angeles because of irresponsible governmental fiscal decisions, Leef said. police are an essential component of America and part of what makes it great. Brave men and women place themselves in harm's way daily to protect citizens, Leef said. Although law-abiding officers are to be commended, officers are not above the law. Police cannot kill unarmed men in the street, and police unions cannot justify illegal behavior committed by officers, Leef said.
Education is the foundation upon which such communities must be rebuilt. It will be a long process, but it does not need to take 100 years to achieve, Leef said. Responsibility starts at home. Parents need to be involved in improving their children's lives through education or the process will fail. Citizens in the most impoverished areas also need to have the freedom to choose schools for their children. Currently, options are mostly limited to public schools, Leef said. A voucher system would result in a better and wider variety of choices for more people.
Common Core is an example of a governmental failure by both parties, Leef said. Students are not showing a measurable improvement under this system, studies indicate.
“Let the government keep their nose out of education and leave the teaching to the teachers,” Leef said. “Illinois should definitely leave the sinking ship called Common Core.”