When President Trump visited Chicago yesterday, he faced protests in the street in front of the Chicago Trump Tower, as photographed by Chicago’s NBC News channel, and even Chicago’s mayor showed just how unwelcome Trump was during his first visit to Chicago as president. Trump during his visit continued to denigrate the city’s sanctuary city status and make inflated claims about its crime problems, as further evidence of his pattern of condemning Democratic strongholds.
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) made it clear on Twitter what she thought of Trump’s insults, writing, “It’s no surprise that
@realDonaldTrump brought his insulting, ignorant buffoonery to Chicago. Luckily, in this city, we know the truth and we will not let anyone — no matter how high the office — denigrate who we are as a people or our status as a welcoming city” and “Rather than belittle Chicago’s communities with hateful and dishonest rhetoric, he needs to go back to D.C. and face his fate.” That last comment appears to be a reference to the impeachment inquiry currently in progress against Trump.
Trump was in Chicago for a campaign fundraising event at Trump Tower as well as to give a speech at the International Association of Chiefs of Police. Notably, Chicago’s top police officer, Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, decided not to attend Trump’s appearance at the meeting of the International Association of Chiefs of Police, citing Trump’s values as being in conflict with those of the city of Chicago. Mayor Lightfoot also expressed support for Johnson’s decision not to attend, which was another target for Trump’s ire. According to The Hill:
Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot (D) on Monday slammed President Trump’s visit to the city as “insulting, ignorant buffoonery.” …The mayor also defended Chicago Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, who Trump blasted after Johnson boycotted the president’s appearance. “President Trump knows as much about policing as he does running a fair and transparent government. I stand by the Superintendent for living up to the values of this great city and its residents,” she wrote. …“Here’s a man that could not bother to show up for a meeting of police chiefs …in his hometown and with the president of the United States. And you know why? It’s because he’s not doing his job,” Trump said of Johnson during the speech (at the International Association of Chiefs of Police meeting). Johnson responded Monday, saying that the city would partner with Trump if the partnership “reflects who we are as Chicagoans.” “This president is known for doing a lot of talking about the city of Chicago. But if he’s truly ready to roll up his sleeves to partner with us, so are we — as long as that partnership reflects who we are as Chicagoans,” he said.
Superintendent Johnson’s comments appear to suggest that while President Trump does a lot of talking about Chicago, he in no way is willing to “roll up his sleeves to partner with” Chicago. Johnson would certainly not be the first person to note that President Trump spends a lot of time complaining about people and places he views as unsupportive of his agenda and of him personally, but does not truly offer any reasonable solutions to the problems those people and places face.
Chicago, despite showing some improvement over the last few years, does have a problem with gun violence, and is of course not alone in that regard in this country. That problem is not, as Trump has alleged at various times, worse than in Afghanistan and it is most certainly not easily fixable in “one day“, as Trump has repeatedly claimed. Common sense gun control legislation, supported by the majority of the people in this country, would help to address the problems of gun violence, but Trump and his fellow Republicans refuse to back such legislation. Not coincidentally, Republicans are heavily lobbied by the National Rifle Association (NRA), which also contributes millions to Republicans’ campaigns and which gives most Republicans in Congress an “A” or “A+” rating, meaning those Republicans vote as the NRA likes, i.e. to quash gun control legislation. That support by the NRA represents a conflict of interest among those Republicans partaking of the NRA’s bounty. Most Democrats in Congress, however, have “F” ratings from the NRA and are therefore not tied to the NRA’s will.