Since the end of 2012, Chicago has been deemed the Murder capital of not just Illinois, but the U.S.

According to the Chicago Tribune and other Chicago news outlets, 2016 crime statistics showed there were 762 murders in Chicago compared to 2015’s 468 murders, then the year before with 416, a 12.5% increase, as well as 2,900 shootings13% more than the year prior, and up 29% since 2013. Most of these incidences occurred in the impoverished South and West side of the city.

In the past, we’ve had politicians either turn a blind eye to the growing gang violence, or suggest we use military force (Federally or State) to quell such activities. For this to even occur, the governor of the state would have to declare a State of emergency to have the national guard to step in.

There’s a more reasonable and cost effective solution to fix Chicago’s gang violence.

To understand why people join gangs, you have to understand Human motivation and need. Most are from broken families, inadequate education and lack of opportunity presented to better oneself.  Instead of using the force of the state militia, giving into fear or casting people to the side, we should do the following:

  1. Legalize Conceal Carry in Chicago
  2. School choice. State funds evenly distributed between Public, Private, Charter and homeschooling. The more competitive they are, the better results – more funding. It’s your children, your tax dollars.
  3. Full legalization of Marijuana, no fine for being caught with over 10 grams.
  4. Decriminalization of harder drug substances, but fine them if caught $50 to $100 – no jail time. But do offer state rehabilitation services if wanted.
  5. Install “Economic Freedom Zones” in urban areas bringing the small business state tax burden to 1.5%. More private sector jobs by Illinoisans will be created this way.
  6. Offer gang members who want a 2nd chance in life by providing them with a means to gain financial stability through a state job or encourage them to join the U.S military or Illinois National guard. Proper training should be provided by instilling discipline and moral structure.
  7. In Illinois, ex-felons have a right to vote. Incarcerated ones do not. Many are unaware of this fact. We need to massively educate and encourage those ex-felons who have proven to turn their lives around to take part in the political process to vote for representatives who will further help fix their community issues.