Squad car cameras will protect the police and the public
The Chicago Police Department should undoubtedly be applauded for its outstanding achievement in reducing the murder rate in Chicago. In fact the dramatic reduction in Chicago has also served to bring down the nation’s overall murder rate. In 2004 we saw 150 fewer murders than in 2003. Superintendent Phil Cline has successfully implemented technology and more creative crime-fighting strategies that have ultimately propelled Chicago towards his goal of being the safest “big city” in the nation.

We must now take that same intensity, energy, and technology, and apply it toward making Chicago the most accountable city in the nation. I applaud Supt. Cline on his launch of the pilot camera program in squad cars. We must work for full implementation of all 1,700 marked squad cars in Chicago. This will be a costly investment, but well worth it. I am pleased to be partnering with Supt. Cline and State Senator James Meeks in finding strategies to obtain the necessary funding to move towards full implementation. It is important to create a transparent environment in order to protect the rights of both citizens and police officers as it relates to professional conduct.

I know the majority of Chicago police officers are hard workers and deserve our praise for their dedication to serving and protecting the public. We should not let their stars be tarnished because of the misconduct of a minority of police who refuse to treat people as if they were their relative or close friend. It is essential that we find the resources to install cameras in every marked squad car. Only when this is accomplished will we be on our way to making Chicago the safest and most accountable big city in America.

?”Isaac Carothers
Alderman, 29th Ward
Ald. Carothers is chairman of the City’s Police and Fire Commission.

Prison system needs to change
About 50 percent of the people in prison are there on DRUG charges! And why? Because they don’t like who they are, so they try to hide behind something. Instead of throwing them in with the real killers, why can’t they be put in a program with their families? Because 90 percent of the time, that’s where the problem is at. But no, the law throws them in with the real bad people and expects them to come out and do no wrong. THAT’S NOT THE ANSWER; IT DOES NOT WORK. They turn bad as well, and then what does the government do if they get another charge; lock them up for even longer. So how do they plan to change it? Thank you for your time. IT NEEDS TO CHANGE!!!!!!!!!!!!

?”Angie Smith