Chicago Cracks Down on Crosswalk-Texters as Gun Murders Hit Record Highs

chicago pedestrian texting
CHICAGO, IL - AUGUST 06: Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Police Department (CPD) Superintendent Eddie Johnson announce during a press conference that on Monday the City of Chicago will file a federal lawsuit to try to prevent President Donald Trump and the U.S. Justice Department from making a federal crime prevention grant conditional on immigration enforcement policies on August 6, 2017 in Chicago, Illinois. The mayor specifically cited applications for the Justice Department's Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grant which provides federal funding to support local law enforcement efforts. Conditions of the grant will require local sharing of immigration status information, unlimited access to local police stations and law enforcement facilities by U.S. Department of Homeland Security personnel to interrogate arrestees, and the requirement that cities provide DHS with at least a 48-hour notice prior to an arrestee's release from jail. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)

The city has Chicago has become almost synonymous with “gun violence,” which is accompanied with some of the strongest gun laws in the nation.

There aren’t many gun control measures to call for in Chicago, because they probably already have them. It’s pretty hard to call for gun control when you’ve already come just short of banning the things.

And how has that turned out for them? One word: bloody.

According to the Washington Times, “five-hundred-and-ninety-three — that’s the number of homicides Chicago has seen this year so far.”

Another source put the figure at 604 homicides, 560 of which were gun homicides. That doesn’t give a complete picture of the gun violence epidemic there, however, as over 3,200 have been shot so far these year.

All that in just a single American city. There were roughly 11,000 gun homicides last year, meaning a single city accounts for nearly 5% of the nation’s gun homicides.

And what are the police there focusing on? The perils of texting while walking.

Yes, really.

According to HotAir, “Mayor Emanuel’s machine City Council is focused on another critical urban issue: Pedestrians texting while crossing the street. Also talking on cells.”

Here’s the keen insight the mayor offered about that: “Everybody does it and then everybody is irritated when someone else does it. So my total view is, I want to look at it. I think it has something to do with people’s own safety.”

More from the report: “Chicago is a sanctuary city for illegal immigrants. But not for walking texters. With all the city’s other crime clearly under control, the proposed municipal legislation would have Chicago police officers monitoring crosswalks for ‘distracted walking’ — pedestrians texting or talking on a cell within city crosswalks.”

Just for some context on the size of the “problem,” 27 pedestrians have been killed on Chicago’s streets so far this year, an increase of only one over last year. A casual look through past statistics reveals that this isn’t even a large problem by historical standards. In 1996 there were 91 pedestrian fatalities, and 77 in 1997 – long before anyone had a smart phone.

Share this story if you think Chicago has dumb gun control laws.

By Matt

Matt is the co-founder of Unbiased America and a freelance writer specializing in economics and politics. He’s been published... More about Matt

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