African-American politician Lori Lightfoot is the mayor of Chicago, the Murder Capital of America. Lightfoot doesn't like negative press coverage about the violent epidemic of shooting incidents and deaths in her city, so she's proposed a novel approach to bad news: black racism.
From now on, the mayor will only grant interviews to "journalists of color," hoping they'll ignore the bad news and report on the good things she thinks she's doing for the citizens of Chicago. Perhaps journalists of color will ignore the fact that 55 people were shot in Chicago last weekend, and 12 of them died, including four teenagers. According to the Chicago Tribune, nearly 1,300 people have been shot in that city so far this year with 244 homicides. Gun violence is up 36 percent in Chicago and nearly 80 percent in New York City this year.
Of course any self-respecting journalist of any skin color would be expected to cover that kind of tragic local news, but Lightfoot has turned that basic journalistic precept upside down, proving that racism comes in all colors of the rainbow coalition.
Although I'm an elderly white male, I feel qualified to comment on racism because I've spent my entire adult life advocating for civil rights and equal rights, starting from when I tried (unsuccessfully) to integrate my fraternity at the University of Washington in Seattle many years ago. Later, in the 1960s I was proud to have been Gov. Grant Sawyer's press spokesman when he desegregated Nevada casinos.
Chicago Tribune columnist Rex Huppke commented on last weekend's outbreak of gun violence. "Shootings are everywhere and always," he wrote. "They're here in Chicago every day (and) they are in other big cities, and yet, America does nothing. We talk gun control, or mental health, or people needing more religion or better schools … and then nothing happens. It's all just talk."
Lightfoot said she's much too busy to "take on the labor of educating white, mostly male, members of the news media about the perils and complexities of implicit bias." That sounds like critical race theory, another toxic idea propounded by the far left. The conservative Wall Street Journal opined that "like the racists of the Jim Crow South, the mayor will now judge journalists solely by the color of their skin," thereby violating the late Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr.'s wise admonition to judge people by the content of their character rather than by the color of their skin.
"Ms. Lightfoot's explicit use of race as a reason for her discriminatory policy may violate the Fourteenth Amendment's Equal Protection Clause," the Journal continued. "Led by the political left, including the current U.S. president's elevation of 'equity' over equal opportunity, America is again dividing itself by race. It's hard to imagine a more dangerous trend." Amen.
Deadly, shocking gun violence is erupting in big cities where "woke" politicians are cutting police budgets, cities like Chicago, New York, Minneapolis, Los Angeles, Seattle and Portland, where veteran police officers are resigning or retiring in droves. As we know, less policing results in more crime. Duh! There are a few woke politicians in the Nevada Legislature, but their radical "police reform" proposals are being rejected by moderates from both parties, including Carson City Assemblyman PK O'Neill, a law enforcement professional who knows something about effective policing, as does Sheriff Ken Furlong.
So I think Lightfoot is a black racist, as are Black Lives Matter militants who demonize white people and police officers of all known skin colors. Shame on all racists, no matter what color they are.
Guy W. Farmer is the Appeal's senior political columnist.