In the aftermath of the Laquan McDonald fatal police shooting, Chicago community activist Zerlina Smith has seemingly accused Chicago Democrats from Mayor Rahm Emanuel on down of betraying their constituents for political power or financial gain.
The only “change” is the change in their pockets, she suggested.
In a video interview outside Chicago city hall (embedded below), she specifically criticized Emanuel for repeatedly lying and, as such, called for him to step down from office.
A Chicago cop shot McDonald 16 times in an October 2014 encounter. The officer is now charged with first-degree murder.
Authorities released dashcam video of the shooting on November 24, many months after Mayor Rahm Emanuel was reelected for a second term in an April 2015 runoff election.
Smith, 38, admitted that she abstained from voting in the last municipal election because none of the candidates, in her view, represented the people of Chicago.
Mayor Emanuel is President Obama’s ex-chief of staff at the White House. Obama’s fellow Democrat was also formerly a U.S. Congressman representing a Chicago-area district.
“Emanuel, [recently fired police chief Garry] McCarthy, and Cook County State’s Attorney Anita Alvarez have faced criticism for taking 13 months to release the video of the 2014 shooting and to charge [the officer],” Reuters reported.
The city has already settled a potential wrongful death civil lawsuit with McDonald’s family for $5 million.
Last week, Megyn Kelly on The Kelly File suggested that the Loquan McDonald investigation at both the state and federal levels may have been slow-walked to help Emanuel’s reelection.
Smith, who is on the left side of the political spectrum in terms advocating progressive change and social justice for working families, unsuccessfully ran as an independent grassroots activist for city alderman from the 29th ward in the February 2015 citywide election. She received the endorsement of the Chicago Teachers Union, a local SEIU chapter, the Green Party, and the International Socialist Organization-Chicago, among others.
Like most American big cities, including Baltimore, the political machine/hierarchy in Chicago is solidly Democrat, which is apparently no longer sitting well with Smith, who spoke to a Breitbart News reporter.
“When I walk outside my door, there’s nothing a Democrat has done—African American or white or Hispanic—for me and my community…they’re on the take, while the grassroots people choose to do what they do because we’re out here for free..our elected officials are puppets and they do as they’re told because they have a dollar amount and an X on their back by the mayor…”
Directing a comment to opportunistic high-profile activists and elected officials who showed up for the Black Friday protest in the Miracle Mile shopping district while the cameras were rolling, Zerlina Smith asserted, “Don’t come out and use the death of our children as a political stunt.”
According to Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass, black voters in the 2015 mayoral election would have abandoned Emanuel in droves in favor of his challenger “if the public had seen Officer Jason Van Dyke pumping 16 shots into McDonald.”
Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan on December 1 sent a letter to current U.S. Attorney General Loretta Lynch calling for, among other things, a federal civil rights investigation of the Chicago PD’s policy on using deadly force and whether a pattern or practice of discriminatory policing exists on the force.
In a separate development, the Laquan McDonald case appears have taken a dramatic turn after reports that Chicago police may have lied about the confrontation on official reports, telling a story drastically different from what the video evidence shows, the Inquisitr reported today. Cops said at the time that the teen lunged at them with a knife, but the video shows that McDonald was walking away at the time he was shot.
To date, 444 murders have occurred in Chicago this year, according to the DNAinfo website.
[Photo via YouTube]