Outraged Chicago residents assembled Thursday in protest of Mayor Lori Lightfoot’s (D) latest plan to “disregard” them in favor of illegal aliens: “We’re struggling,” and, “We’re tired, Ms. Lightfoot.”
(Video: Fox 32)
While President Joe Biden continued to flounder on the national stage, missing the mark on what truly needed to be done to secure the southern border, backlash from locals in the Woodlawn neighborhood of Chicago has temporarily halted a plan to convert a vacant school into housing for illegal aliens.
Protestors gathered outside what once was Wadsworth Elementary School Thursday to express their concerns over Lightfoot’s plan to repurpose the structure to accommodate the influx of illegals, calling the move a “slap in the face” when those resources could be allocated to solve the problems plaguing residents.
Jennifer Maddox, a community leader seeking to oust sitting Alderwoman Jeanette Taylor, spoke at the protest she helped organize and said, “The community feels disrespected, they feel as though they were not included, and they need answers today.”
According to the Chicago Tribune, Maddox stated, “The resources that they’re pouring into the building for the migrants, we don’t have those. So it’s unfair to say we’re going to provide all these resources for the immigrants but we disregard the people that are already here.”
With crime, unemployment, and homelessness remaining wholly unsolved, a resident identified only as Erica said, “There is a lack of resources in our community, we don’t need anyone else to come in and suck those up. We’re tired, Ms. Lightfoot,” and referred to the plan as “disrespect” as she suggested the mayor wouldn’t attempt to house the illegals in neighborhoods with different predominant ethnic backgrounds.
Woodland residents gather to protest against the opening of a shelter for migrants at a former school in the neighborhood.
“There’s plenty of room in Little Village for their people,” a resident said. pic.twitter.com/d4sRGIQTH3
— Laura N. Rodríguez Presa (@LAURA_N_ROD) January 5, 2023
Jeane Clark, another who spoke out at the protest, expressed how the community members sympathize with the migrants but, “We’re struggling right now to make Woodlawn an affordable, mixed-income community. While I would love to help immigrants and everybody else, I’d like to help my own first.”
Meanwhile, Ald. Taylor explained to the Tribune that a meeting would be held with the mayor’s office, constituents, and the police next week and said, “This is not just about the migrants; this is about our black and brown solidarity. So this rhetoric of us against them is, no, this is a sanctuary for all. This should be us taking care of each other.”
Lightfoot, who has asked the state for $54 million in additional emergency funding to address the influx of illegal immigrants did not comment on the housing plan in Woodlawn but did react in favor of Biden’s announcement Thursday as she decried states like Texas that have facilitated the transport of illegals to their final destinations in cities like hers as though they were being sent against their will.
“[I]n the absence of [immigration reform], as a welcoming city, Chicago has a responsibility to treat asylum seekers with dignity and respect, which we have and will continue to do. However, like other cities across the country, we are at maximum capacity in housing and services. Thus, it would simply be inhumane for cities and states to continue sending migrants to Chicago. Treating migrants like freight must end. It is simply immoral,” she said.
However, like other cities across the country, we are at maximum capacity in housing and services. Thus, it would simply be inhumane for cities and states to continue sending migrants to Chicago. Treating migrants like freight must end. It is simply immoral.
— Mayor Lori E. Lightfoot (@chicagosmayor) January 5, 2023
In speaking with the Tribune, Ald. Raymond Lopez decried Lightfoot’s attitude and plan, and said, “We are unnecessarily causing tension and friction between African Americans and Latinos. It was painful to watch…to see the amount of pain caused to Woodlawn and the amount of ignorance that it’s creating…Democratic cities are absolutely helping prove the point that many of the big cities that say they are welcoming, are welcoming in name only, as long as no one shows up.”
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