Susan Lee & All the Unasked Questions

A recent NBC 5 Chicago interview of former Deputy Mayor Susan Lee is just another demonstration of the short comings of the Chicago media to hold powerful people’s feet to the fire. The interview by reporter Chris Hush was a total softball fest where Hush failed to ask a single meaningful question about the time Lee spent in the Mayor’s office. Lee is now working for Chicago CRED an organization that does violence prevention work. We featured Chicago CRED in a past episode of our show & podcast which you can find here.

Lee came to Chicago to help build the community response to violence infrastructure in her words; however, she only lasted a single year and left her position without an explanation a year after she arrived. After her departure a trove of internal emails from the Mayor’s office became public including emails where Lee raises the alarm in early July 2019 about how both the Mayor and Chicago Police Department Superintendent David Brown were publicly blaming bail reform and lenient judges for violence in Chicago. Lee stated pretty directly that both their community partners and justice system partners were complaining that those accusations were not reflective of what the data said about what was driving crime.

Hush failed to ask any questions about Lee’s time in the Mayor’s office, the response to her emails, and why she left. Instead the interview with Lee was centrally focused on her recent opinion editorial in the Sun-Times that was co-authored by 19th Ward Alderperson Matt O’Shea. Even if you focused on just the editorial Hush missed opportunities to push back on the false narratives that Lee and O’Shea were pushing.

Also on the show today we discuss a reoccurring segment titled social media fails. Today it is a repeat offender – CWB Chicago.

Video from today’s show

Tracy has nearly two decades of experience researching and working within criminal justice systems. When Tracy began pursuing a career dedicate to system reform, he found that no single organization existed to promote evidence-based discussions among law enforcement agencies and the communities they serve. Recognizing that citizens in Chicago deserved the right to demand transparency in their criminal justice system, Siska established the Chicago Justice Project. He received his Master of Arts degree in Criminal Justice at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

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This is our Chicago Justice Podcast that covers crime, violence, and justice issues in Chicago. We will feature deep dives in to justice system data, interview with researchers and justice system reform advocates, as well as evaluations of justice system practices.

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