Lightfoot: don't use cash

Street vendors in Chicago are getting robbed at gunpoint, and are demanding more police presence to deter the criminals. Apparently, the vendors have this bizarre idea that thugs pointing guns at them shouldn’t be occurring.


Lori Lightfoot has a better solution: don’t take cash from customers. After all, if you have money on your person you really do deserve whatever you get. Criminals gotta eat too. Haven’t you ever heard the term “you eat what you kill?”

First the problem:

Little Village activists are speaking out after they say four street vendors were robbed at gunpoint.

They are calling for an increased police presence in the early morning hours while vendors are working.

Community leaders say the offenders used semi-automatic rifles to commit the crimes.

They are now asking the top cop and mayor to hold a town hall to discuss a safety plan.

On Thursday morning, street vendor Maria Aguilar, 50, was helping a customer at her usual spot near 26th Street and Homan Avenue when she noticed a white car come to a quick stop.

Four people got out of the car and approached her with guns drawn. One of them pressed a gun against her head and demanded cash, she said. They took $75 from Aguilar and $200 from her customer.

“I now have a lot of fear, and I’m very scared,” Aguilar said, adding that it’s the fourth time she’s been robbed since November. “I sometimes don’t even want to go out and sell, but I have to pay bills, pay rent.”

Aguilar joined other street vendors, activists and residents at the 10th District police station Thursday afternoon to demand the department provide more resources to protect vendors. They say three other street vendors in the area were robbed around the same time and have been increasingly targeted in recent months.


Lori Lightfoot has become a criminal’s best friend during her time as Chicago Mayor. Crime–violent and less violent–has become a crisis during her tenure, and for some reason, the residents of the Windy City are complaining about it. Carjackings, murder, robbery…aren’t these just examples of a boisterous city culture?

Robberies in the 10th Police District, which includes Little Village, jumped 13% in 2022 compared with the previous year, according to statistics kept by Chicago police.

A CPD spokesperson said in a statement that in response to the recent robberies of street vendors the department has provided “special attention and visibility” to the affected areas.

Maria Aguilar clearly made a huge mistake: using legal tender to conduct transactions. Really, if you think about it, she was just asking to get robbed. Lightfoot’s plan to reduce the number of instances where young street thugs jump out of cars and hold guns at the heads of law-abiding citizens makes much more sense.


Lightfoot has taken some heat on the crime issue, and in response, she insists that her plan to make her city safe is working. Not everybody agrees because of course they rely on their lying eyes rather than Lightfoot’s assurances. This is how misinformation metastasizes online.

Trust the authorities, not your lived experience.

Lightfoot also has a bone to pick with FBI statistics, which indicate that crime has skyrocketed in the city. According to the FBI major crimes were up a startling 33% from 2019. Some crimes are far more. If you own a car, for instance, thefts were up 139%. Clearly, Chicago needs to adopt the car-free 15-minute city concept, as well as drop using cash transactions.

Now everybody says that Lightfoot is facing a tough bid for reelection, but I have my doubts. Not because she is anything other than a disastrous incompetent hack whose election was predicated on being a historic choice, as a Black female lesbian, but because voters in Blue areas seem to insist on the most incompetent leaders to run their cities.


Perhaps I am wrong and people are just fed up. I hope so since I drive through Chicago fairly regularly, and because it is a shame to see yet another major American city implode. Polls indicate that she is actually an underdog in the race, so that is encouraging. But Chicago is a machine politics city, and she owns the machine that drives voters to the polls.

But who would replace her that would be any better? Several of the other candidates are talking about crime and economic development, so perhaps I am being too cynical about Chicago’s voters. But then again, New York City’s Mayor Adams was supposed to have been a huge step up from DeBlasio, and look how he turned out.

Our cities have always been run by the equivalent of protection rackets. Decades ago it was political machines who won the power to distribute resources to their friends, and today it is much the same. However, in the past, machines delivered the goods and services promised. Corruptly, but trash did get picked up and criminals did get their comeuppance, often in extralegal ways.

These days the friends of politicians who get rewarded are simply grifters at non-profits and services unions, not labor unions. Both are corrupt, of course, but the labor unions actually did real labor on top of the no-show jobs and envelopes under the tables.


Mayor Lightweight’s allies are the grifter class, not the builder class who made things work while taking their cut.

So while I hope she gets booted, and recognize it is possible, I suspect that the political machine will carry her across the finish line.

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