CHICAGO – Police arrested the organizer of an anti-violence protest, that tried to shut down part of a highway in the vicinity of Chicago’s O’hare International Airport, on the Day of Labour.
Live TV reports Monday showed Rev. Gregory Livingston quietly speak of a State of Illinois Police trooper as the other protesters, and dozens of other troopers stood in the area.
When the trooper explained to Livingston that he would be arrested if he did not leave an area close to the highway, Livingston answered politely: “Arrest me.” The trooper tapped him on the shoulder before leading him away. Authorities have not said if he will be charged.
Earlier in the day, when a few dozen demonstrators gathered, Livingston told reporters he wanted to emphasize the contrasts in the land that the third in the last city. Poverty and a lack of investment in minority neighborhoods underpinned much of the deadly violence , he said.
“What we try to do is end the tale of two cities in Chicago,” he said. “We think that much of this violence is generated by the Chicago legacy of segregation.”
Troopers successfully blocked access to Interstate 90, also known as the Kennedy Expressway, and no protesters appeared to reach it. The protesters had planned to march west on the highway for about a mile.
Some protesters carried signs that said “End of State Sanctioned Violence.” Other called on Chicago mayor to resign, chanting, “Hey, hey. Ho, ho. Rahm Emanuel has to go!” Troopers used megaphones to warn some of the protesters that they are too close to the highway, saying, “The arrest process has begun. Let the road or you will be arrested.”
Livingston also organised a protest in the last month that briefly shut down Lake Shore Drive on Chicago’s North Side.