By Arlene Jones
The 2016 Primary Election is Tuesday, March 15 and I can't wait. It will be a watershed moment in so many ways. Because it is a primary, each person who comes to vote must declare a party. Unlike the general election in November, the primary is designed to determine who will be the candidates on the November ballot for each party.
So if you go into the polling place and profess to be "an independent," the ballot and candidates will reflect that choice. I can still remember the incredulous look of a woman who voted electronically and was upset because a certain candidate wasn't on her ballot. It was all because she had declared "Green Party" and her choices for those offices were minimal.
I'm taking a Democratic ballot. Not that I'm not enthused by any of the candidates running for president on both sides, but because the one race that matters the most if you are in the non-white racial category, is the race for Cook County State's Attorney.
Now I have never voted for Anita Alvarez. But a lot of voters, who have no knowledge of candidates but do vote religiously, put her in office. The Laquan McDonald murder was a pivotal moment in history as it is very difficult to see his killing and even consider for a moment why, after other police had called for a taser and didn't shoot him, Van Dyke showed up and emptied his entire clip of bullets into that kid. And that is what Laquan was. A dumb kid, probably angry at the world, whose biological parents deserve to pay a penalty for their role in producing an offspring, without caring about what they produced. But I digress.
The big issue, and it is a big issue, is why it took Anita Alvarez over a year to indict the officer. If there is a single person who believes that the investigation had to take that length of time, well, I can guarantee that their melanin content is minimal at best.
But there are several other reasons that folks should be upset with Alvarez. Let us not forget Rekia Boyd and that out-of-uniform cop, shooting an unregistered handgun — over his shoulders into a crowd — by the name of Dante Servin.
Alvarez prosecuted him and conveniently charged him with "reckless homicide" when the meaning of reckless and the actions of shooting cannot ever go hand in hand. So in the midst of his bench trial, the judge sets the officer free for that reason. Again, anybody buying that she made an "honest mistake" has their Ray Charles vision on.
Then there was Howard Morgan, the former railroad police officer who took 28 bullets and lived. Not a single cop was shot or genuinely injured (maybe one or two hurt their trigger finger) and after his initial mistrial, well, Alvarez, in her quest for justice, retried him and got that so-needed guilty verdict so he could go to jail.
If black people don't vote and allow Anita Alvarez to be re-elected to office, then the question "Just how dumb can we be?" will truly be answered.
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