Over 100 people were arrested in Chicago last night after looters devastated the Magnificent Mile, one of Chicago’s most popular shopping areas. As the chaos got out of hand, looters clashed with police, resulting in two people shot and 13 officers injured. Prior to the events, officers were called to the South Side where an armed man was reported. When the man fled and shot at the officers, they returned fire, hitting but not critically harming the 20-year-old. Rumors began to spread that the officers had shot and killed an unarmed 15-year-old. “Tempers flared, fueled by misinformation,” stated Chicago Superintendent David Brown. Shortly after, reports of looting reached the police department.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot, a Democrat, expressed outrage at the violence but made it clear to President Trump, “No, we do not need federal troops in Chicago, period, full stop.” She stated, “I’m calling upon [Trump] to do the things that we do need. We need common-sense gun control.’’ Black Lives Matter Chicago leader Aislinn Pulley said they would remain protesting in the streets until demands for police reform were met. Other young activists said the looting was in response to years of black neighborhoods being looted by the government. Some BLM activists argued that looters were doing so in order to feed and clothe themselves. Lightfoot condemned this notion.
“Any successful slave rebellion, any successful overthrowing of a non-representative government for black people has had to come through burning things down.”Jalen Kobe, 19-year old activist
Black Lives Matter Chicago issued a statement that read, “The mayor clearly has not learned anything since May, and she would be wise to understand that the people will keep rising up until the [Chicago Police Department] is abolished.” #AbolishThePolice https://t.co/x2t8FOFKDv— James Woods (@RealJamesWoods) August 11, 2020
The Right has directed much criticism to prosecutors, claiming that looters and those inciting violence have gotten off the hook with a mere slap on the wrist. “These criminals were emboldened by no consequences in the criminal system,” stated Superintendent Brown.
“There is no social justice component to the criminal activity that we saw last night. This is simply about criminal actions by individuals who are hell-bent to cause anarchy and chaos in the city of Chicago.”Raymond Lopez, City of Chicago Alderman
Brian Hopkins, another alderman representing downtown, called on Lightfoot to bring in federal officers, claiming, “Our city cannot afford even one more night of rampant and uncontrolled criminal activity. This has to stop.”