Lori Lightfoot to be inaugurated as Chicago’s first black lesbian mayor

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF CNN)

 

Lori Lightfoot to be inaugurated as Chicago’s first black lesbian mayor

Lightfoot to Chicago: You did more than make history 02:06

(CNN) Monday will mark a historic day in Chicago as the city inaugurates its first African American lesbian mayor.

Lori Lightfoot, a former assistant US attorney, will be sworn in at 10:30 a.m. at Wintrust Arena in the city’s Near South Side community, according to a release from Lightfoot’s office. The event will include performances by Miguel Cervantes of Chicago’s “Hamilton” and the Chicago Gay Men’s Chorus, among others.
Chicago Mayor-elect Lightfoot on challenges facing city

Chicago Mayor-elect Lightfoot on challenges facing city 00:55
“I look forward to joining Chicagoans on Inauguration Day to celebrate the start of a new day for our incredible city,” Mayor-elect Lightfoot said in a statement. “We’re building a Chicago that celebrates our differences, inspires us all to be better, and embraces new ideas. There is no limit to what we can do when we all work together.”
Lightfoot, 56, defeated Toni Preckwinkle, a political insider who heads the Cook County Board and chairs the Cook County Democratic Party, in a runoff election in April. Preckwinkle is also an African American woman.
“I think the most historic thing was beating the old, entrenched Chicago machine and getting such a resounding mandate for change,” Lightfoot said the morning after she won.
Both Lightfoot and Preckwinkle were the final contenders in a crowded field of 14 candidates vying to be mayor of the country’s third-largest city.

Lightfoot promised to tackle the city’s issues

Lightfoot will take office amid efforts to address violent crime in the city and improve police-community relations.
Violent crime totals in Chicago have made headlines in recent years. In 2016, the city reported its highest number of homicides in two decades: 762. But killings have dropped since then: 650 in 2017 and 550 in 2018, police said.
The Chicago Police Department has credited the drop in violence partly to hiring more officers and stronger community policing. The department added 1,161 officers in two years, exceeding a 2016 pledge made by former Mayor Rahm Emanuel and police Superintendent Eddie Johnson to add 970.
Still, a series of high-profile cases of have strained police-community relations. In the wake of the Laquan McDonald scandal — in which a white police officer, Jason Van Dyke, shot a black teenager 16 times as he walked away from police — Lightfoot was appointed by Emanuel to head the newly created police accountability task force.
Many of the panel’s recommendations were similar to the findings in the US Justice Department report that found serious problems with the police department’s handling of racism within its ranks. Under Lightfoot, the city replaced its widely criticized police oversight agency with a civilian body designed to have much more oversight over officers and their supervisors.
She made holding police officers accountable for their actions a bedrock of her campaign.
Lightfoot’s platform also looked at investing in neighborhood schools, according to her website. She promised to create an elected and representative school board so parents and the community can have a voice in how the school system operates.
Lightfoot also promised to expand affordable housing options and support small businesses.

Lightfoot joins a short list of black women mayors

Lightfoot’s election marks her first time in political office.
She was born and raised in Ohio and comes from modest beginnings. Her mother worked as a health care aide. Her father worked in a factory and as a janitor.
Lightfoot went to college at the University of Michigan. After two years as a legislative aide in Washington, she attended law school at the University of Chicago. She has lived in the city for all but one year since 1986.
She often brings up her own background while promising to improve the city’s school system and bridge the economic gap between city neighborhoods.
“I want to make sure that kids who look like me and are growing up in families like mine have the opportunity at their fingertips,” she said.
Lightfoot describes herself as “an out and proud black lesbian.” She and her spouse, Amy Eshleman, have a 10-year-old daughter.
Lightfoot joins a short list of black women mayors to lead a US city with a population of at least 100,000 people. Including her, there are only 13.

Chicago’s Next Mayor Will Be A Black Woman

(THIS ARTICLE IS COURTESY OF NPR NEWS)

 

History To Be Made As Chicago Votes For Mayor

Chicago mayoral candidates Toni Preckwinkle (left) and Lori Lightfoot speak during a March 13 forum on crime and violence.

Kamil Krzaczynski/AFP/Getty Images

No matter who wins Tuesday’s election for mayor of Chicago, the United States’ third-largest city will be led by an African-American woman for the first time.

The historic race pits Cook County Board President Toni Preckwinkle against Lori Lightfoot, a lawyer and former head of a police oversight board who also would become the city’s first openly gay mayor.

The free-for-all campaign has represented a sharp contrast to almost every past election in a city that has been synonymous with Democratic machine politics and bossism for nearly a century.

In the first-round election in February, Lightfoot, 56, and Preckwinkle, 72, were the top two vote-getters among 14 candidates. Lightfoot led the crowded field with 17.5 percent of the vote, while Preckwinkle received about 16 percent, qualifying them for Tuesday’s runoff election.

The wide-open succession battle began with a surprise retirement announcement last year from two-term Mayor Rahm Emanuel, a prolific fundraiser and former White House chief of staff to then-President Obama. The famously combative and profane Emanuel had earlier said he planned to run for a third four-year term.

But Emanuel’s popularity suffered major blows as he grappled with the city’s deep financial crisis and the increasingly volatile relationship between police and the black community. Those tensions rose dramatically after the 2015 release of a videotape showing a white officer firing 16 shots into Laquan McDonald, killing the 17-year-old African-American.

Both Lightfoot and Preckwinkle have sought to brand themselves as much more progressive Democrats than Emanuel, a centrist who often feuded with public-employee labor groups, including the teachers’ union.

After recent polls gave Lightfoot a big lead, many Emanuel backers in the city’s business community gravitated toward her.

In her first campaign for public office, Lightfoot has argued that she’s the best candidate to “break from the status quo that has failed us” and deliver “equity, inclusion and fairness.”

“It’s unacceptable, the condition of our communities on the South and West sides,” she said during a candidate forum last week on WBEZ-Chicago Public Media, referring to predominantly black and disadvantaged areas of the city of 2.7 million people. “The only way we are going to carve a new path for the city, to take us in a direction that our communities don’t continue to be resource starved, is to vote for change.”

Lightfoot also appeared to benefit from the anti-incumbent, reformist mood of an electorate rocked by yet another City Hall corruption scandal.

In January, federal prosecutors alleged attempted extortionby veteran City Council member Edward Burke. And they accused Burke of shaking down a businessman to give a campaign contribution to Preckwinkle, who is also leader of the Cook County Democratic Party.

Preckwinkle and her backers countered that Lightfoot is not a true progressive or outsider, having worked under Emanuel and former Mayor Richard M. Daley.

Preckwinkle also warned that Lightfoot’s thin political résumé shows she would be far too inexperienced for the daunting job.

“It’s easy to talk about change,” said Preckwinkle, who once served as a member of the City Council, representing the ward where Obama lived. “Change is not easy. It takes hard work. It takes experience. Being mayor is not an entry-level job.”

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Chicago’s Mayor, States Attorney, And Police Chief Should Be Fired Now

 

I do not live anywhere near Chicago Illinois any more though I did live in the area from 1966-1977 and I have friends and family who do still live there. I am about 9 to 10 driving hours away these days and I no longer listen to any of the Chicago radio stations so I was unaware of this particular case of a police officer murdering this 17-year-old man who is being splashed on our TV screens lately. It was just a couple of days ago I first heard of this event when the Chicago States Attorney filed first degree murder charges against the 14 year city cop who put 16 rounds into this young man as he was walking away from the officer.

 

This black lives matters group that has been protesting in Chicago has asked a very valid question, why did it take 13 months to bring charges against this officer? Have you personally seen the video of this execution? I have the same questions about the people who ‘are the system’ there in Chicago. You know very well that these people I mentioned in the headline viewed this same video evidence that we have seen within the first couple of days after it happened. It is their job to ‘do the right thing’ and when people in those positions don’t do their job they should be fired, at the very least because they themselves have disgraced their positions as well as themselves. The actions of this murderer disgraced the law enforcement profession to its core yet it took 13 months to charge the shooter with anything, why?

 

The manager of a nearby Burger King swears that his stores video system caught this shooting on camera and that when the Chicago Police viewed it that they erased a section of it. If this is true and it can be proven then the officer in charge should be charged with being complicit to the murder and for impeding a murder investigation. It isn’t just ‘we the people’ who should care about policing agencies being honest, the profession should also care even more, but do they? To me it does appear that there was a major attempt to cover this crime up, to hide it from the public, maybe they were just hoping it would just go away with time, thank the Lord that it did not. Some folks that are new to this blog may think that I am anti cop, nothing could be further from the truth. What I am is a person who wants all policing departments around the world to always act honestly, to never ever be ‘the bad guys’. We the public hire these people to protect us and that is an impossible job if they themselves are nothing but ‘GANGS OF BLUE’ thugs themselves. In other words Officers you and everyone else in your department must not just quit trying to cover up police crimes you must have enough integrity to not tolerate these criminal actions in the first place.

 

I say that the States Attorney and the Police Chief should be fired at once because of it taking 13 months to charge the shooter even with all the video evidence that showed plainly that the officer committed cold-blooded murder yet they kept this evidence from the public. I do say that the Mayor Mr Emanuel should also be fired because it is (to me) quite obvious that the Mayor in his bid for re-election required a lot of black citizens to vote for him and if these videos had surfaced before the election he had no chance of being re-elected. So, was his actions also criminal besides just being unethical? I don’t know about that, I am not a lawyer nor a judge and I do not have a law degree, but maybe this issue should be investigated. If Law Enforcement Officers wish to have the full backing of the people then they must act in legal and respectful manners at all times with the people. The whole event is a horrible black eye toward the Chicago Police Department and it’s officers. We the people need to feel safe when dealing with the police because we have to depend on the Officers and the States Attorneys to have our backs. Officers are unfortunately very much necessary in human society or society itself can not exist. I say unfortunately because as we all know the world has a lot of horrible people running in our streets just like the young man who was shot down. Do not play like he was some innocent little kid. When you are old enough to be in the Marine Corps, you are not a child any longer plus the fact that about everything this young man was doing was illegal. If he had been acting in a legal manner he would not have been targeted. Did he deserve to be executed for those actions, of course not, put in jail yes, gunned down like a rabid dog, no!