When we think of Chicago, it’s hard to think of anything besides the murder rates and the gang affiliations. Crime ridden streets that are plagued by violence and controlled by those who see street justice as the only word of law. To that end, what do you say when the people that are sworn to protect by using the law of justice, does the exact opposite? How else can you look at years of police coercion and false confessions? How else can we look at false imprisonment based on the word of frightened children? How else can we look at the withholding of police footage of a teenager being shot in the back for over a year? As anything but absurd! These questions are raised to the former Cook County State’s Attorney, Anita Alvarez whom has let many of these atrocities happen under her watch. Alvarez has used tactics such as prosecuting individuals for recording the acts of police officers, but later her unconscionable acts were found to be unconstitutional.
Alvarez has prosecuted individuals under the Eavesdropping Act for recording police in public. Chris Drew recorded his non-violent arrest for street peddling of art. The peddling charge was dropped and Alvarez pursued the much harsher charge of recording police officers voice’s without their permission. This charge could have a penalty of up to 15 years in prison. (Anita Alvarez, Wikipedia, 2016)
The most detrimental, and in the end causing the demise of Mrs. Alvarez’s political career, was her handling of the Laquan McDonald Case. To the outcry of many activist, the yearlong withholding of the police shooting of an unarmed teen was the final straw. As protesters took to the streets and demanded the resignation of both Rham Emanuel, Mayor of Chicago, and Alvarez, for the absence of a lawsuit filed against the city of Chicago but a payout paid from the city of Chicago to the McDonald family. Which seemed a little cover-up(ish) for the citizens of the Windy City, didn’t see Alvarez resigned, but later found her voted out of her position in 2016.
What do you think of Alvarez’s political career?
Written by: Sabreen Shabazz-Straker, Contributing Writer, Modern Domestic