Chicago Sun-Times Opinion: To end unrest, transform our communities

Father Michael L. Pfleger, senior pastor of the Faith Community of Saint Sabina. | Karie Angell Luc/for Sun-Times Media

On Dec. 9, Mayor Rahm Emanuel addressed the City Council regarding the present crisis and unrest in Chicago in response to the murder of Laquan McDonald.

During his address, he said we must end a time when some individuals in Chicago are treated as second-class citizens. I totally agree and applaud his desire to do so. However, If that is going to happen we must do more than transform and change the culture, practices and broken processes of the Chicago Police Department. Because at the end of the day if we have the best Police Department in the country and don’t transform our communities, we will still have communities on the West and South sides of Chicago living as second-class citizens.

Because we have second -class communities we must broaden our demand for justice! We need:

  • Economic development.
  • Jobs to eradicate the double-digit unemployment numbers.
  • Opportunities for those returning citizens from prison.
  • Great academic and funded schools.
  • Economic support to sustain and open black-owned businesses.
  • Opportunity and options for young people to be involved in beyond being locked up And targeting of our communities by city services and planning.

Mr. Mayor we need you, as mayor, to go to federal, state, county and city government to unleash resources as well as reach out to corporate America to invest and employ. Second-class citizenship and the tale of two cities must no longer be acceptable and we must have the courage and commitment to do complete transformation. We need a mayor to fight for the second -class communities of Chicago.

Rev. Michael L. Pfleger,
Faith Community of Saint Sabina

Chicago Sun Times, Letters to the Editor Posted: 12/20/2015, 04:00PM