One Chicago mayoral candidate speaks the truth about crime in his city

We’re exactly one month away from Chicago’s mayoral election, and early voting has already started. The big question is whether Lori Lightfoot, who has presided over large parts of Chicago diving into a crime-rich, Dante-esque hellscape, will get another term. Currently, there are multiple candidates vying against her, but one—Willie Wilson, a five-time candidate—stands out for his courage in saying what must be said: Chicago needs its police, and criminals must face consequences.

Nothing needs to be said about Lightfoot. Her incumbency speaks for itself.

Except for Wilson and Paul Vallas, the other candidates are all generic leftists.

  • Kam Buckner—It’s the usual plan for “justice,” more money for public schools, more public transportation, etc.
  • Chuy Garcia—boasts about being a “progressive community leader” for “universal health care” and “the rights of immigrants.” Sounds like a Hispanic Lightfoot.
  • Ja’Mal Green—He wants to know if you’re ready for “progressive change.” One would think that most Chicagoans would already have had a snootful of that change.
  • Brandon Johnson—He’s a leftist teacher and, in that capacity, a union organizer. Call me cynical, but when a teacher’s union organizer wants a “more equitable Chicago,” you pretty much know where that’s going.
  • Sophia King—Another progressive teacher who was a veep for Planned Parenthood Chicago and who wants gun control.
  • Roderick Sawyer—A progressive stockbroker who backs the teachers’ unions and wants a $15 minimum wage.

Paul Vallas is a bit different. Although he’s also a Democrat, he wants some variation of school choice and believes that the police have a necessary role in keeping Chicagoans safe. Unfortunately, he’s White, which is currently a no-no in a Democrat-run city.

Image: Willie Wilson. Fox News screen grab.

And then there’s Willie Wilson, who is, like comedian Pat Paulson, a perennial candidate, having already run four times for the mayor’s office. Wilson is a bit of an odd bird when you watch him because he’s not comfortable with the camera and speaks in a hesitant manner. Were he a school child today, he might be labeled as someone with Asperger’s. Wilson also lacks the flashy college credentials needed to function in today’s political world. However, he turns out to be a very interesting person.

It’s Wilson’s bio that separates him from all the other generic candidates. He was born in 1948, in the segregated south, the son of a Louisiana sharecropper. His childhood education stopped after 7th grade when he left home to begin working in cotton and sugar cane fields for 23 cents an hour.

Wilson moved to Chicago in 1965 and began as a custodian and burger flipper at a McDonald’s. He worked his way up and got a loan to own his own McDonald’s franchise, eventually owning five franchises. When he sold the franchises, Wilson started a medical supply company, produced a syndicated gospel music television show, and worked in local politics.

Through his efforts, Wilson has become a very wealthy man who supports churches, community organizations, and impoverished individuals. One of the things he’s done is paid back taxes for people whose homes the government is about to repossess. Sadly, in the midst of all this “do it yourself” wisdom, Wilson also supports reparations. In Chicago, you’ll never find the perfect candidate.

A defining moment in Wilson’s life came when his son, Omar, who got involved with Chicago gangs, was shot to death at age 20. It is this loss that powers his current approach to politics.

Wilson has run for Chicago mayor five times and for the U.S. presidency once. He considers himself an Independent Democrat. He’s also a genuine American success story and eccentric.

If you go to Wilson’s campaign website, you’ll see that his “issues/positions summary” is so generic that it sounds like a political speech from some 1940s movie. Reading it, I thought of the generic, content-free, populist campaign speeches Loretta Young gave when playing Katie Holstrom, a wholesome farm lass who becomes a successful political candidate, in 1947’s The Farmer’s Daughter (a charming movie, by the way).

Where Wilson endeared himself to me—and probably to many others—is in his full-throated condemnation of crime in Chicago, coupled with support for the police and recognition that crime will not stop until criminals face punishment, something he expanded upon on Tucker’s show:

I doubt Wilson will win, but in a sea of generic Democrat candidates, all of whom (except, maybe, for Vallas) promise to do more of what Lightfoot has already done to Chicago, he’s a refreshing person to see on the campaign trail.

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