nEwfor Public Safety in Chicago
RETURN TOMORROW FOLKS
This key page is a mess today
chicago has a
Photo: Chicago Tribune
so how best to
SAFETY in chicago?
Mayor Johnson put some strong
Public Health safety practices into play
over the 2023 Memorial Day weekend,
as we wrote here
But reimagining public safety in the age of information and digital communications requires a third component is no longer Chicago's hugely overburdened public safety (police, courts, prisons) resources. And for its unstafed public health (medical) resources. In the digital age, it's also and equally a job for the city's public communications (media) system
1. Rename the current Mayor's office of Violence Reduction the Mayor's Office of Citywide SAFETY.
Chicago Civic Media
of an obvious and critical
yet utterly neglected
public safety fact
Instead, all of Chicago's recent mayors have relied on an outmoded Industrial Age public safety METRIC known as
. . . that City Hall has used to address
the uniquely youth victimizing violence of
the heavily armed, drug dealing, youth
victimizing street gangs that have
occupied and terrorized large
areas of the city ever
since the 1960's.
Violence Reduction has failed
to reduce or resolve this
digital age violence.
It has also kept Chicago from
having a safety strategy capable
of addressing this violence effectively.
Garbage in, Garbage out.
No wonder Chicago is violent today.
Violence Reduction actually makes Chicago more violent.
Today's violence is citywide.
Courtesy WGN News
Yes, wake up!
it's time for a
public safety strategy
that INFORMS, INSPIRES AND
mobilizeS ALL CHICAGOANS
TO REACH THE GOAL OF
for all chicagoans
It's the way to go. AND HERE ARE
digital age reasons why IT'S
NEEDED And feaSIBLE
1. THE DESIRE
~ citizens, police, business, City Hall ~
2. THE GOAL
Chicagoans YEARN for a city
... where you can GO ANYWHERE
without fearing for your life.
... where every child can WALK SAFELY
TO SCHOOL without fear of
crossing a gang line.
... where people and businesses
are MOVING INTO THE CITY,
not moving out.
Image courtesy Federated Companies
4. THE digital age
Chicago STILL has time to enter the digital age in the field of public safety. Two evolutionary public safety paths remain open to it:
From Force to Collaberation. On this path Chicago evolves from its Industrial Age reliance on police force to a Digital Age reliance on three blended forces of LAW ENFORCEMENT (police, courts, prisons), the healing force of its PUBLIC HEALTH (medical and sociological) resources and the safety-generating force of its PUBLIC COMMUNICATIONS SYSTEM.
On this path, Chicago's media supplement their traditional news coverage of violence with dynamic PUBLIC FORUMS that mobilize ALL Chicagoans - Police, City Hall, business and Chicagoans of all ages and backgrounds - to make Chicago a SAFE place to visit, work, play and raise a family in.
From Force to More Force. On this path, Chicago never enters the digital age in the field of public safety. It continues to rely on INDUSTRIAL AGE police force to address its DIGITAL AGE violence.
Chicago's media never use their resources to BRING OUT THE BEST in the city's police, leaders and citizens. Instead, they continue to play a lead role in perpetuating the fear and mistrust that keeps Chicago from addressing violence as a thinking, digital age city.
chicago is on this tragic path today.
are fleeing Chicago
Image courtesy WTTW Channel 11.
5. thE OUTCOME
The time has come to bring order out of chaos. ($10 to the first person who tells us who said this first.)
For citywide SAFETY is FEASIBLE when Chicago views the digital age as a saving opportunity to deploy the miracle of modern communications technolo- gies to make itself SAFE.
This means adding a third public safety resource - the MEDIA of Chicago's digital age Public Communications system - to Chicago's traditional Public Safety (law enforcement) and newer Public Health (medical/ sociological) resources.
With this addition, Chicago at long last enters the DIGITAL AGE in the field of public safety.
And suddenly things change. Chicago's media are connecting ALL Chicagoans - citizens of all ages and backgrounds, law enforcement, business, City Hall - to make Chicago SAFE For all residents.
Chicago is now addressing its violence intelligently: at the level of its ROOT CAUSES.
Rigorous, public forums including Public Safety GAMES (refereed and adjudicated searches for best solutions to violence) generate viable, fully vetted SOLUTIONS to violence that win the approval of Chicagoans, Police and City Hall alike. Once approved, every step of solution implementation gets close public attention.
Solutions large and small come from all neighbor- hoods, ages, occupations and sides of the law. Many are low cost or no cost. Gradually Chicago builds the TRUST needed to pay for costly solutions.
Chicago's safety-generating public forums earn the RESPECT and TRUST of citizens, Police and City Hall alike. Chicagoans are learning to respect and trust each other. There's less fear.
Chicago is on the way to thinking and acting as a connected, DIGITAL AGE CITY. Its old, top-down violence reduction strategy has given way to a new, top-down and bottom-up citywide safety strategy.
These changes are historic. America's individualist, industrial age I Will City is belatedly reinventing itself as America's first connected, digital age We Will City.
And let's not forget that in 2024 Chicago will be hosting the
Democratic National Convention
and the entire nation will be looking CLOSELY
at what Chicago - long America's urban violence
poster child - is doing to make itself SAFE.
In response, Chicago has the
chance to show the rest of America how a
DIGITAL AGE CITY can make itself SAFE.
Chicago will make
itself SAFE when its media
are earning the RESPECT and
TRUST from all Chicagoans that
enables citizens and City Hall to listen
to and learn from each other in
Chicago's ongoing drive
for citywide safety.
a HUGE task. a decade
But Chicago once
met a HUGE challenge
when Chicagoans knew it was
CRUCIAL to their survival
2023 is a good time
for CHICAGO'S MEDIA TO
start DEPLOYing CHICAGO's
#1 DIGITAL AGE
public safety resourcE:
So To Which Media Should chicago
Turn First TO MAKE PARTNERS OF
CHICAGOANS AND CITY HALL?
THE OBVIOUS CHOICE? IT'S
network tv stations
AND HERE'S WHY NETWORK TV
IS THE BEST CHOICE:
"For more than 50 years, [network TV] has been the best, most efficient way to communicate with the largest possible audience. This probably won't change anytime soon."
in 2023, most Chicagoans
STILL turn to TV for their local news, sports and weather.
WHAT ABOUT CHICAGO'S OTHER MEDIA? They will informally SELF-ORGANIZE around safety-generating TV programming much as they have long self-organized around the telecasts of the Chicago Bears, "feeding off" these telecasts quite profitably. Now they will have the chance to feed off safety-generating TV programming, critiquing, supplement and enriching it in ways that attract and engage their audiences.
AH, BUT One Big Issue Remains:
How Will Chicago's TV Stations and other
media monetize safety-generating programming?
Chicago's commercial media will aggregate and tap deep into the largest of all large Chicago markets: the Market of the Whole of all Chicagoans with a stake in the safety of their families, neighborhoods and city. (That's every man, woman and child in Chicago).
Media will first tap this presently untapped market experimentally, by trial and error. Over time they will find profitable ways to earn the respect and trust of their audiences. To this end this site features a novel 3-minute TV news segment called TWO CHAIRS. In time, TV stations can expand their safety-generating programming to full, multi-month seasons of 30 or 60-minute safety-generating programs (we like civic-purposed reality TV) that inform, inspire and motivate City Hall, law enforcement and 2.7 million Chicagoans of all ages and backgrounds to make Chicago SAFE.
Safety-generating TV programming will be profit centers for the stations that do the best job of making Chicago with citizen input.
SOUND IMPOSSIBLE? It's not.
it's not only possible, its
Our FIVE DIGITAL AXIOMS are
guidelines for a civic-purposed,
safety-generating citywide media.
Our GRAPHIC HISTORY of the PAST, PRESENT AND
FUTURE OF CHICAGO PUBLIC SAFETY since 1920 traces
the evolution from police force towards citywide
communication in maintaining public safety.