A Chicago Democrat wants parents of “out of control” children to be fined up to $5,000 and take mandatory “family counseling,” the Chicago Sun-Times reported.
Alderman Raymond Lopez introduced an ordinance during Monday’s City Council meeting that would require parents and legal guardians to pay for their children’s crimes.
The ordinance would make it illegal for a parent to “willfully and/or knowingly allow a minor in their charge to engage in a host of offenses wreaking havoc on the quality of life in Chicago neighborhoods. Those offenses range from panhandling, underage and public drinking and cannabis use, violating curfew and ‘climbing on’ cars to street takeovers and drag racing.”
It would also ban juveniles from being loaned or supplied paintball guns. Additionally, it would be prohibited for minors to beg, solicit, or use social media to “abet or encourage” illegal activity.
Parents would be required to undergo “licensed family counseling” and pay a $1,000 to $5,000 fine, depending on the severity of the child’s crimes.
Lopez’s ordinance states that parents “shall be held as responsible and accountable for the activity of said minor as if they committed the acts themselves.”
“The goal isn’t just to fine parents,” he stated. “It’s to change behavior and to help parents so that they raise better children.”
The alderman believes the proposed ordinance could end street takeovers, drag racing, and other illegal activities that have become commonplace in Chicago.
“We have children who are out of control causing 90% of the problems,” Lopez told the Chicago Sun-Times, noting that he introduced the legislation after seeing a video on social media of a street takeover that resulted in an unruly mob trapping a Tesla. The video captured footage of the driver desperately trying to flee the scene as youths pounded on the vehicle.
“Hundreds of kids took over an intersection and began jumping on passersby trying to escape the madness,” Lopez explained. “These teens have jumped on buses. They’ve jumped on cars — not just downtown, but in the neighborhoods. And we have no real recourse.”
Lopez wrote in a post on X about the street takeover, “Our laws are weak when it comes to stopping takeovers because we are afraid to hurt people’s feelings by holding them accountable.”
Earlier this month, Lopez told Fox News that “socialists” and “ultra progressives” have allowed crime to spiral out of control.
“Common sense requires us to start standing up and pushing back on the criminality in our neighborhoods, to start holding people and parents accountable, because oftentimes these are 12-, 13-, 14-year-olds who are engaging in this behavior, such as the armed carjacking that is so rampant in the city of Chicago,” Lopez stated.
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