Needless Bloodshed: Chicago 2016 Edition
In Chicago, 2016 began and ended on a bloody note. And 2017 is picking up right where 2016 left off. We warned in February that the largely “gun free” Windy City’s number of homicides was rising at an alarming, perhaps historic, rate. And while (thankfully) no records ended up being broken, the cumulative number of murders for 2016 was bad enough and definitely far worse than recent years. Officially, 762 lives were needlessly lost on the streets of Chicago last year. This represents “the most in two decades in the city and more than New York and Los Angeles combined,” CBS News reports (New York and LA registered 628 homicides). Moreover, “The increase in homicides compared to 2015, when 485 were reported, is the largest spike in 60 years.”
And it only took a few hours for 2017 to ring in additional homicides. As reported by the Chicago Tribune, “An argument between two men at an Uptown bar in the early hours of Jan. 1 ended with the two shooting at one another, leaving both dead. Their deaths ushered in the new year, marking the first and second homicides of 2017 and keeping up 2016’s soaring pace of violence.” As a side note, Chicago is not alone when it comes to worsening crime. Just before Christmas, The Wall Street Journal issued a report documenting a similar trend all over the nation: “Sixteen of the 20 largest police departments reported a year-over-year rise in homicides as of mid-December. … Nationally, the murder rate rose in 2015 for the first time in nearly a decade, though it remains well below where it stood during the 1990s.”
That last part is somewhat comforting. But what isn’t reassuring is the current trend and the risk our leftist politicians take in bringing us perilously closer to a dark age through fomenting racial grievances on urban poverty plantations and waging a war on cops, all while continuing to disarm law-abiding citizens. Barack Obama will be in his hometown of Chicago Jan. 10 to present his farewell address. His speech will surely be replete with self-praise and adoration for the so-called progress his administration has made. It would be more appropriate if he offered a eulogy for the thousands who have been slain under leftist policies.