Friday, March 1, 2019

Ald. Cappleman Talks About His Police Academy Vote in Latest Newsletter

From Ald. Cappleman's newsletter today:

"Yesterday, I chaired the City Council's Committee on Zoning, Landmarks and Building Standards and heard the request to build a new Joint Public Safety Training Academy on the west side of Chicago, an area with high poverty and crime.

Discussions for the training academy started more than two years ago, and the need for the facility was bolstered by the City's consent decree, which is based on the findings of a yearlong investigation of the Chicago Police Department by U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ).

The DOJ spelled out the need for  a new facility that could provide more intensive training, including in identifying racial bias and crisis intervention training of police, fire fighters, and first responders within one facility.

Yesterday's debate was spirited, but that was necessary in order to hear from all stakeholders.

Here is the text of my testimony before the Zoning Committee:
In City Council, when I hear aldermen of color pushing for something that they say will help their community, it gives me pause to consider that perhaps my colleagues know something that I do not, so I listen very carefully.

I have heard about the community support that Alderman Mitts, and surrounding Aldermen have secured around this project. However, I have also had a number of people from around the city contact me about their opposition as well.

It’s been suggested that the Police Academy should not go into a community that is overwhelmingly African-American and experiencing poverty, where there is already distrust with the police due to experienced police violence stemming from institutional racism that has plagued our city and our country for centuries.

The Dept. of Justice has made it clear that we need a much better training facility so that police officers, fire fighters, and our emergency responders can have more coordinated training that will teach them about their own long held beliefs, some of which I believe are rooted in institutional racism.

This facility needs to be in the center of the city where there is woundedness and distrust. The task of the consent decree is to help restore the trust of many people of color who have had too many experiences where their lives have been threatened and their trust has been broken.

My wish is that as the police and those in the community they serve have more opportunities to interact with one another, possibly some healing can begin.

Last Monday, I met with some young men and women in my ward office who struggle with full time employment that provides a living wage. Many of them have been involved in gangs and have a felony history. They were focused on surviving in a world where all they experienced was rejection. However, like all of us, they believe the ticket out of experiencing violence and poverty is with a job that can support them and their loved ones.

This Police Academy will create opportunities for these individuals in our communities where society is stacked against them and who are constantly struggling.

The reality is that good police training costs money but substandard training can cost much more, including the loss of lives. It's time to move forward and begin building trust."


  1. Sun Times editorial supports Cappleman's position and takes on Preckwinkle and Lightfoot.

    Cappleman put it well. Good policing costs money. Bad policing literally costs more money AND lives.

    Think of all the money the city has paid out in civil settlements over police abuse or just plain screw ups. It's well over 100 million dollars in the last few years.

    The McDonald shooting could easily have been avoided with better training, equipment and tactics.

    Biggest issue facing this city right now is crime. Carjackings nearly tripled between 2015 and 2017 from 339 to 938--basically because the police stopped chasing suspects and the states attorney's office often didn't seek immediate jail time.

    Tell me policing doesn't matter when you read stats like that and ask anyone who's been carjacked at gunpoint whether it's a crime.

  2. There's a new progressive alderman who took Moore's place, Haddon. She's the new AOC for Chicago. She was on the TV blasting the building of the Academy. I mean, this woman hasn't even been sworn in....and she said "the people"....who are the people? Is it the whole city or just a small niche of people? I can see that this upcoming term of aldermen are going to cause a lot of drama.

  3. Ok, I've had the time to digest the election results, belch, down to the precinct level and have some comments.

    1. Congrats to Lalonde for making the runoff. I won't be supporting her, but I do admire her big brain and work ethic.

    2. I'd offer congrats to Capp, but come on--we knew he would make it.

    3. Voting turnout in 46th went up about 35% from the Feb 2015 contest--that surprised me

    4. Congrats to Angela Clay who got the hard core leftie vote out and actually surpassed the Davis or Kaplan numbers from 2011 and 2015. You get more with an easy smile and pleasant disposition than actively turning people off.

    6. Where's the number five you ask? Well since there's a runoff and FIVE challengers I'm refuse to type that number followed by a period.

    7. Erika Wozniak if you plan to run for office again you need to actually work for it next time. Lala triumphed because she has actually been involved in the ward for more than a minute and had a base of supporters from her community involvement and attending lots of meetings during the campaign.

    You have the raw material to be a solid candidate you just need to work for it and by that I mean work for it for years prior to actually running. I don't know exactly how much CTU and other unions dropped on you, but it was money they could have used better in other races.

    8. The gruesome twosome of Kreindler and JON-ROBERT. Well combined, let's round up, you got 6% of the vote. Better than I expected and Kreindler's relative strength in Lakeview accounts for much of that. Politics ain't beanbag. If you're going to be involved get serious and get involved.

    9. Cappleman won in 2011 not because he had more money than the other candidates, or more endorsements, or was more charismatic and a better public speaker than his opponents. He won because he had worked hard for 12 years or so in the ward AND had run and lost in 2007.

    Losing is a great teacher in life and politics. Being known is a great way to gather votes. Jumping into a race with no base and no real involvement in the ward is both futile and narcissistic.

    10. My prediction for the runoff is Cappleman 122% Lala negative five bajillion. Seriously I expect Capp to win, but it could be close.

    11. Interesting thing is if Capp wins, as he will or I'm not named Phileas Fogg, he will likely not run in 2023 as he'll be about 70 yrs old then. I imagine he'd like to ride off into the sunset after the Uptown Theater and some of the other developments open.

    New Ward Map and probably a double digit number of contenders, like the 47th ward, means a runoff where any of the top three challengers from this round would have a excellent chance of making said runoff if they WORK for it.

    Lay the groundwork challengers because there's always other opportunities around the corner.