Trump Insults Chicago At Police Chief Conference, Puts Ketchup On Hot Dog
Donald Trump visited Chicago yesterday for the first time in his presidency. He delivered a speech at the International Association of Chiefs of Police Conference, entering the McCormick Place ballroom to the Village People song "Macho Man." Unfortunately, he must've thought he was at a "The Dean Martin Celebrity Roast." The president of the United States went on at length about how this great American city is actually an open sewer.
TRUMP: It's embarrassing to us as a nation. All over the world they're talking about Chicago. Afghanistan is a safe place by comparison. It's true.
It is in fact untrue, but he keeps saying it anyway. According to information not found inside Trump's anal cavity, 2,307 people died in August as a result of violence in Afghanistan. That's significantly more than the 535 people killed in Chicago for all of 2018. Afghanistan is also a country not a city. Its murder rate per million people is an estimated 26.34 compared to the US's 42.01. Trump argues that our homicide rate would decline dramatically if we just "took out" Chicago. The nation's poverty rate would also decline significantly if we ditched the entire state of Mississippi, but that's not how any of this works.
Trump bashes Chicago's top cop Eddie Johnson: He's not doing his job youtu.be
Trump was especially cranky because Chicago Police Department Superintendent Eddie Johnson skipped his tirade. Johnson, who is black, said listening to Trump's blather didn't line up with the city's "core values" or his "personal values." Rank-and-file police officers tend to like Trump and his unhinged Dirty Harry cosplay, and the Chicago police union's board of directors issued a vote of no confidence in Johnson last week. The union claimed that boycotting the speech "would be an insult to both President Trump and the office of the presidency itself." Trump doesn't need anyone's help insulting the office he
stole holds. Johnson didn't buckle and released this statement in response to the vote.
JOHNSON: As police officers, our job is to be the voice for the voiceless and ambassadors to the communities that we serve. I can't in good conscience stand by while racial insults and hatred are cast from the Oval Office, or Chicago is held hostage because of our views on New Americans.
Trump can't comprehend honor or self-respect, so he just railed against Johnson yesterday. He blamed him for all of Chicago's crimes, including the Saint Valentine's Day massacre.
TRUMP: After all I've done, and I've done more than any other president for the police.
This is also a lie.
TRUMP: Here's a man that could not bother to show up for a meeting of police chiefs, the most respected people, in his hometown. And with the president of the United States. And you know why, it's because he's not doing his job. Last year, 565 people were murdered in Chicago.
What Trump says about Chicago's homicide numbers isn't a lie but it is misleading. Trump's statements are usually one or the other. He doesn't mention that homicides fell by about 100 compared to 2017.
TRUMP: Since Eddie Johnson has been policing, more than 1,500 people have been murdered in Chicago and 13,067 people have been shot. During the first weekend of August 2019, seven people were murdered.
He's just listing crime figures out of context. It's like pointing out that people have died in America since Trump has been president.
TRUMP: Recently [Chicago] had 78 shootings over a weekend spree and three people killed. And Chicago has the toughest gun laws in the United States. That doesn't seem to be working too well, does it.
The people who draw smiley faces on the president's briefings should also tell him about an invention called the automobile. Most of the guns used in Chicago crimes come from out of state. A reported 21 percent were from neighboring Indiana, the home of Vice President Mike Pence.
Trump called Johnson a "disgrace" and blasted Chicago's status as a sanctuary city. The crowd didn't seem to mind that Trump was smearing the city's top cop. They also laughed heartily when Trump randomly attacked Jussie Smollett, the actor who allegedly faked his own hate crime. Trump suggested this pathetic act was the true hate crime.
TRUMP: Then you have the case of this wise guy, Jussie Smollett who beat up himself. And he said MAGA country did it -- MAGA country... That's a hate crime and it's a scam. It's a real big scam just like the impeachment of your president is a scam.
Trump and conservative media will never forget the Smollett case. He's the new OJ Simpson. Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot didn't take kindly to Trump's antics.
Johnson said yesterday that the narrative Trump promotes of Chicago as a "city on fire" just isn't true. He's willing to work with Trump for any constructive purpose but he's not interested in demagoguery. He also dropped the mic and pointed out that the "same police officers the president criticized for their inability to protect the city spent all day protecting" his sorry ass.
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Stephen Robinson is a writer and social kibbitzer based in Portland, Oregon. He's on the board of the Portland Playhouse theater and writes for the immersive theater Cafe Nordo in Seattle.