The trial that will ‘tear Chicago apart’ starts this week

Chicago may be on its way to its own version of the Rodney King beating trial. If the name of the defendant whose trial begins after the holiday weekend, Jason Van Dyke, doesn’t ring a bell, perhaps the name of his alleged victim will: Laquan McDonald. If you don’t recognize Laquan’s name, then you haven’t been paying attention to the fall of Chicago, with the horrendous murder rate, and the spread of street violence into the toniest neighborhoods.

John Kass of the Chicago Tribune, the best columnist in America writing for a metropolitan daily, is well aware of why this trial matters so much and what lies ahead for the city he knows and loves:

Van Dyke is the white cop who shot black teenager Laquan McDonald 16 times. The video of the shooting was horrific and sparked protests. The trial will be even more emotionally charged.

And if he’s acquitted, there is the threat of violence in black neighborhoods as protesters — including those antifa white boys of the hard left — flock in from all over the country, to make Chicago another Ferguson, or another Baltimore.

It’s just a possibility, not a certainty. But the conditions are right for it. And pretending it’s not out there doesn’t make it go away.

As Kass notes, the shooting video already has changed Chicago politics:

The case has shaped Chicago politics and has framed the race for mayor. It could very well end Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s political career, because it was his City Hall that kept that police shooting video hidden from public view until after his re-election in 2015.

And the Left is aiming to take maximum advantage and shift Chicago’s government to the far left.

“We’re going to be running young progressive candidates against these aldermen [allies of Rahm], and with the Laquan McDonald case going on, you tie those incumbents right to Rahm, and what happened to Laquan,” Green said.

Everyone understands that a fair trial is almost unthinkable:

But there is one speech Emanuel and his aldermen aren’t making: that speech where they stand and say in a loud and clear voice that Van Dyke deserves a fair trial, and that the rule of law will be observed in Chicago regardless of the verdict.

Political Chicago doesn’t much care about a fair trial for Van Dyke. They want him to go down for murder, and they want it done fast, because they’re afraid of the threat of black neighborhoods erupting and the effect on their careers.

Van Dyke himself acknowledged the threat of riots in his interview — his first since the 16 shots were fired almost four years ago — with Chicago Tribune reporters Christy Gutowski and Stacy St. Clair. (snip)

“If there’s ever been a case that is a poster boy for trouble, it’s this one,” said the Rev. Michael Pfleger, pastor of the city’s largest black Roman Catholic parish, St. Sabina on the South Side.

“No one wants violence, but you can hear people talking, you hear groups saying this and that,” Pfleger told me. “It ranges from ‘We’re going to have to face the reality that cops get off’ to ‘That’s the last straw, burn the city down.’

“The relationship between police and the community is weaker than I’ve ever seen it, the young don’t trust the system,” Pfleger said. “It’s like everything is hanging by a thread.”

I fear there’s going to be a hot time in old town tonight… some nght, and Mrs. O’Leary’s cow will have nothing to do with it.

Photo credit: Charles Edwin Miller

Chicago may be on its way to its own version of the Rodney King beating trial. If the name of the defendant whose trial begins after the holiday weekend, Jason Van Dyke, doesn’t ring a bell, perhaps the name of his alleged victim will: Laquan McDonald. If you don’t recognize Laquan’s name, then you haven’t been paying attention to the fall of Chicago, with the horrendous murder rate, and the spread of street violence into the toniest neighborhoods.

John Kass of the Chicago Tribune, the best columnist in America writing for a metropolitan daily, is well aware of why this trial matters so much and what lies ahead for the city he knows and loves:

Van Dyke is the white cop who shot black teenager Laquan McDonald 16 times. The video of the shooting was horrific and sparked protests. The trial will be even more emotionally charged.

And if he’s acquitted, there is the threat of violence in black neighborhoods as protesters — including those antifa white boys of the hard left — flock in from all over the country, to make Chicago another Ferguson, or another Baltimore.

It’s just a possibility, not a certainty. But the conditions are right for it. And pretending it’s not out there doesn’t make it go away.

As Kass notes, the shooting video already has changed Chicago politics:

The case has shaped Chicago politics and has framed the race for mayor. It could very well end Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s political career, because it was his City Hall that kept that police shooting video hidden from public view until after his re-election in 2015.

And the Left is aiming to take maximum advantage and shift Chicago’s government to the far left.

“We’re going to be running young progressive candidates against these aldermen [allies of Rahm], and with the Laquan McDonald case going on, you tie those incumbents right to Rahm, and what happened to Laquan,” Green said.

Everyone understands that a fair trial is almost unthinkable:

But there is one speech Emanuel and his aldermen aren’t making: that speech where they stand and say in a loud and clear voice that Van Dyke deserves a fair trial, and that the rule of law will be observed in Chicago regardless of the verdict.

Political Chicago doesn’t much care about a fair trial for Van Dyke. They want him to go down for murder, and they want it done fast, because they’re afraid of the threat of black neighborhoods erupting and the effect on their careers.

Van Dyke himself acknowledged the threat of riots in his interview — his first since the 16 shots were fired almost four years ago — with Chicago Tribune reporters Christy Gutowski and Stacy St. Clair. (snip)

“If there’s ever been a case that is a poster boy for trouble, it’s this one,” said the Rev. Michael Pfleger, pastor of the city’s largest black Roman Catholic parish, St. Sabina on the South Side.

“No one wants violence, but you can hear people talking, you hear groups saying this and that,” Pfleger told me. “It ranges from ‘We’re going to have to face the reality that cops get off’ to ‘That’s the last straw, burn the city down.’

“The relationship between police and the community is weaker than I’ve ever seen it, the young don’t trust the system,” Pfleger said. “It’s like everything is hanging by a thread.”

I fear there’s going to be a hot time in old town tonight… some nght, and Mrs. O’Leary’s cow will have nothing to do with it.

Photo credit: Charles Edwin Miller