The new media company Fusion, a collaboration between ABC News and Univsion, requested that I write about some issues particularly relevant to my region.
In the first, an essay on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, I explain that the hideous and ridiculous anti-gay law was Governor Pence’s fumbling and bumbling attempt to ingratiate himself to the religious right for a presidential run in 2016. The entire controversy doubles as an indictment of the extremity of the Republican base, which rejected Pence’s predecessor, Mitch Daniels, from presidential consideration because of his comparably moderate record on social issues.
In the second, I offered an endorsement of Jesus “Chuy” Garcia in the Chicago Mayoral Race.
Every summer in Chicago, police, residents, and reporters expect hundreds of murders to occur in the city. Headlines of drive by shootings that leave a corpses curbside are routine. For the first time, lawmakers are proposing a plan for the destruction of street gangs in Chicago.
Illinois Senators Durbin and Rich have crossed party lines to collaboratively secure $30 million in federal money to fund the use of racketeering laws against street gangs. For too long, evil and empty-headed thugs have terrorized the streets of poor neighborhoods – intimidating law abiding people into silence, holding children hostage to their pathetic turf wars, and driving middle class people away.
Congressman Bobby Rush of Illinois responded to the smart idea with race baiting demagoguery. He called federal targeting of all gang members for arrest an “elitist, white boy” solution, and insisted that what gang members really need is “jobs and education.”
In my new article for The Atlantic – “Senator Durbin’s and Kirk’s ‘Elitist, White Boy’ Plan to Fight Gangs is Right” – I celebrate the Senators for their bipartisan aggression in the attack of a serious scourge on our society.
I also show how the disingenuous “jobs and education” lament undermines, disrespects, and insults all of the murderous gang members’ victims – the decent, law abiding and working poor who inhabit their “territory.”