Making peace and moving forward. Two Illinois politicians met in Washington today to discuss their differences on how to address Chicago’s gang problem. The same issue ignited racial tension last week when Senator Mark Kirk attempted to tackle one gang in Chicago by saying he wanted to round up 18,000 of its members, a sweep of sorts that struck a dreadful chord with Congressman Bobby Rush. He retorted by calling Kirk’s approach an “…upper-middle-class, elitist white boy solution to a problem he knows nothing about.”
They men met in person for an hour or so. What exactly was discussed in the closed door meeting is not clear, but they did say Congressman Rush plans to take Senator Kirk on a listening tour of the 1st District where gang presence is very real and gang shootings a regular occurrence.
The listening tour between Rush and Kirk has not been scheduled yet but Kirk insists he wants to go where political officials like himself are typically fearful of going: talking to kids who live on some of these blocks is the main objective.
But they are not the only ones talking about the subject. Another south side alderman is speaking out about the wild talk between politicians that has been hard to ignore.