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building public trust is key.
START WITH CHICAGO'S LEADERS.
show 'EM lEADING TOGETHEr
to make chicago safe
SOME THOUGHTS ABOUT
TRUST, LEADERSHIP AND MEDIA
Why can't Chicagoans trust their leaders? Media involvement has a lot to do with it. which mistrust has been disseminated via sensationalized, negative soundbite media coverage both of violence itself and of city leaders' continuously failed efforts to reduce violence ever since heavily-armed, drug-dealing street gangs began taking control of entire Chicago neighborhoods in the 1960's.
During all these years, Chicagoans have seen soundbites of their leaders squabbling and smearing each other on the TV evening news. When was the last time Chicagoans saw their leaders leading effectively to make Chicago on TV?
Decades of overblown election-time campaign promises of safety or reduced violence, conveyed via TV soundbites, have gone unkept
At election time, Chicago's leaders connect with Chicagoans primarily via blizzards of misleading, mind-numbing TV attack ads.
Press accounts of Chicago election campaigns are now dominated by stories about a) the dollar size of candidate "war chests" and b) the superficial and derogatory content of TV attack ads.
Televised election-time debates are little more than an extension of the back-backbiting seen day in and day out TV news.
When the crippling impact on Chicagoans of wartime levels of violence is also taken into account, it's small wonder that most Chicagoans have come to think of violence as a hard, natural, unalterable fact of Chicago life. Like brutal Chicago winters.
Yet violence is not an act of nature. It's man-made.
Chicago made itself violent. Chicago can make itself safe.
Trust can only be restored when trust is earned. Chicagoans yearn for safety. They yearn for a city where you can go anywhere without fearing for your life. The digital media that comprise Chicago's public communications system have ample resources to generate the trust needed to make this yearning for safety a reality. When leaders earn it from the people, and when the people earn from each other.
Chicago's digital-age media will play a pivotal role in building trust when the see the enormous profit potential of doing so. When they do, they will help make Chicago SAFE by bringing out the best in Chicagoans and their leaders instead of the worst.
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