The local government in Chicago led by Mayor Rahm Emanuel has already publicly opposed President Trump. But it turns out the president may have an unlikely ally in the city after all.
Former gang members in Chicago who still have deep roots in the community have reached out to a pastor, Rev. Darrell Scott of Cleveland Heights, Ohio, who they knew was going to meet President Trump. The pastor was part of a group of African-American leaders invited to the White House. The apparently agree with Trump that violence has gotten out of control and they are ready for peace. It may sound a bit far-fetched, but crime has become so terrible in Chicago that is completely plausible that even the gangs are sick of violence.
“They believe in this administration,” Scott said of the gang members. “They didn’t believe in the prior administration. They told me this out of their mouths, but they see hope with you.”
Scott said he planned to travel to Chicago “to have a sit-down about lowering that body count” and set up social programs in return. He did not identify to whom he spoke.
Trump called that a “great idea.”
Rev. Scott also told the media afterwards that Trump’s plan for Chicago is more than just arresting criminals.
Talking to reporters in Washington after the meeting, Scott said, “We’re going to have some proactive measures taken with Chicago.”
He added, “We’re not just going to send in the Feds and start arresting black people,” according to a Reuters report.
Scott, the pastor of an Ohio megachurch New Spirit Revival Center, campaigned for Trump and was a member of his transition team. (He has said his support for the president stems from what he describes as Trump’s respect for Christianity and how they agree that “Christianity gets a bad break.”)
With reporters in the room, Trump allowed that, “We’re going to need better schools, and we need them soon. We need more jobs. We need better wages, much better wages. We’re going to work very hard. We’re going to do this together.”
Here is the video of the meeting: