The Crusader Newspaper Group

Brandon Johnson Inaugurated as Mayor of Chicago

Mayor Brandon Johnson

By Wirepoints

The new mayor’s optimism doesn’t match his past rhetoric

Brandon Johnson’s political talent was on full-display as he delivered his inaugural address. His energy was contagious and his tone optimistic as he presented a sweeping vision for the city, promising to find common ground among city aldermen, to send resources to struggling communities, to restore safety to the city’s streets and to transform Chicago’s public school system.

Unfortunately, the mayor’s optimism today didn’t match the rhetoric he’s used in the past, like advocating for “defund-the-police” policies, or expressing his distaste for standardized testing, or blaming corporations for poverty and violence in Chicago. The policies he proposed before and during the mayoral campaign are more extreme versions of the policies that have already left Chicago in crisis.

The city’s lax approach to criminal justice, for example, has left Chicago with the shameful distinction of being the “Murder Capital of the Nation” – the most homicides – for 11 years running. Other crimes including robbery, armed battery, criminal sexual assault and car thefts are on the rise. Policies to appease the powerful Chicago Teachers Union have also left the public education system in shambles. And tax-and-spend policies with no reforms have accelerated Chicago’s fiscal crisis. As a result, businesses and residents are leaving at a record pace.

Chicago has lost almost one million people since its peak in population. It now stands at 2.7 million vs. 3.6 million in 1950. The city needs a strong commitment to merit, competence and business-friendliness if it is to reverse course. Unfortunately, Brandon Johnson’s “equity” policies are set to do the opposite.

What you need to know:

  • Johnson was voted into power by the Chicago Teachers Union, the nation’s most militant labor organization. He’s said he wants to “eliminate testing standards” and has railed against student homework and test prep. That threatens to further derail education in a city where only 6% of CPS black students can do math at grade level and where not a single child is proficient in reading in 22 CPS schools.



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