Group plans Black ‘Christmas’ Mag Mile protest; DOJ officials to meet with CPD

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The Coalition for a New Chicago said they want the mayor to resign or they will force the city’s economy into what they’re calling “Black Christmas.” (Photo abc7chicago.com)

The Coalition for a New Chicago is planning a Christmas Eve protest on the Magnificent Mile called #BlackChristmas.

The group gathered outside City Hall Wednesday to announce the demonstration. Gregory Livingston, founder of a Coalition for a New Chicago, said the protest is an attempt to engage with the public.

“We’re going to pray for our city, pray for our leaders here. But we’re also going to march down the street. We’re going to be singing, chanting and everything else. But we are going to be a peaceful, disruptive force down on Michigan Avenue from about noon to 5 o’clock that evening,” said Gregory Livingston, founder of a Coalition for a New Chicago.

The coalition’s goal is to get Mayor Rahm Emanuel to resign in the wake of the Laquan McDonald case. They also appealed to President Barack Obama to help make that happen.

The group announced the demonstration on the same day U.S. Department of Justice officials were scheduled to meet with Interim Superintendent John Escalante and other members of the Chicago Police Department.

The meeting is part of a federal civil rights investigation into officers’ use of force, sparked by the McDonald case.

Escalante said police plan to cooperate fully. He said he knows it will be a lengthy process, but he believes it will help CPD become a better department.

Tuesday night, 16 protesters were arrested downtown after they shut down a busy intersection.

They joined hands and laid down to block Congress Parkway at Clark Street as a way to call attention to all victims of gun violence. They also demand Emanuel’s resignation for the handling of the McDonald case.

Protesters also interrupted Tuesday’s hearing at City Hall, where the CPD crisis triggered heated exchanges.

“The rhetoric that comes from here and from the media has really, really kicked these kids while they’re down, these officers,” said Dean Angelo, president of the Fraternal Order of Police.

“Your kids are feeling like they’ve been kicked while they’re down. Well, our kids are getting killed while they’re down,” said Ald. Pat Dowell, 3rd Ward.

The McDonald case will also be the focus of the Cook County Board of Commissioner’s meeting Wednesday.

Commissioner Richard Boykin wants a special prosecutor to handle the case and is calling for an independent federal investigation.

A resolution is expected to be presented Wednesday for Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez to answer questions about the case in a special hearing.

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