- Pages: 3
- Word count: 544
- Category: Violence
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Urban violence is prevalent in Chicago. Chicago News Tribune reported that according to statistics, Chicago’s homicide rate is roughly double that of Los Angeles and triple that of New York and this has alarmed the authorities because the early months of 2010 has already claimed 113 victims and 16 of them are children. The Chicago Federal Government has implemented Project Ceasefire last May 2004 which recruits former gang members and well-meaning residents as outreach workers and violence interrupters but in spite of this, violence continue to happen and have claimed the lives of hundreds of Chicago’s citizens. One reason for onset of violence is the number of hot-guns which proliferate in the city streets.
To address the situation, State Representatives John Fritchey and LaShawn Ford made a call to Chicago Governor Pat Quinn to deploy the National Guards to help the policemen curb the rate of violence in the Chicago’s city streets. This is quite an uncommon proposition because basically the national guards are tasked to augment the regular armed forces during times of war or national emergency such as floods, earthquakes and other natural calamities. There have been cases that the National Guard was mobilized to restore order during riots in Los California and in Ohio but history has shown that the intervention has disastrous results like the Ohio anti-Vietnam protests at Kent University which culminated to their shooting into a crowd of students on May 1972 that killed four and wounded nine students or their participation in the LA riots of 1992 where they were attributed with shooting of five people suspected of violating the curfew order placed on the city.
Project Ceasefire is an operational organization in Chicago and has the same aim as lowering down the incidence of urban violence in Chicago. The State and the National government has allocated budget to this organization. There are also many well-meaning citizens who are giving free services to the organization notwithstanding the Chicago police force who are also on the same mission.
There is no need for a supplementary force from the National Guards to lower down the rate of urban violence. What it needs is careful implementation of the laws and statutes and the allocation of additional budget for Project Ceasefire to cover more areas in Chicago. There should also be stricter implementation of the gun laws. Gun should be strictly prohibited to the youth who are always involved with street riots and the law enforcers should be very relentless in pursuing and prosecuting gun running syndicates.
The National Guards are not trained on Constitutional and Federal Laws so there is a chance of them using unnecessary forces to carry out their proposed tasks. The state can hire additional people in the Police force who will be most equipped and trained in dealing with urban chaos. Chicago resident can also do their part in solving the problem by being vigilant and cooperate with the Police Department in curbing urban violence. The Project Ceasefire coupled with increasing police visibility and resident involvement is the right solution towards achieving violence-free Chicago streets and as for the National Guards; they have their work cut out for them as additional forces in times of war or national emergencies.