Left-Wing Protesters to Shut Down Chicago Streets in Anti-Violence March

Sailboats practice in front of the downtown Chicago skyline, Friday, June 10, 2016, during practice for an America's Cup World Series sailing event, which will be held Saturday and Sunday. (AP Photo/Kiichiro Sato)
AP Photo/Kiichiro Sato

Protesters plan to shut down yet another busy Chicago street, this time it is to be the city’s famed Lake Shore Drive which will be brought to a standstill by protesters marching against the rising violence in the Windy City.

Several groups, including the Coalition for a New Chicago and Violence Interrupters, have banded together to announce plans for a march to start on August 2 at 4 pm. The groups say they will start out on Lake Shore Drive near Belmont and then head toward Wrigley Field, the stadium where the Chicago Cubs play, according to the Chicago Tribune.

“Oftentimes, the cries of complaints from poor people aren’t heard,” organizer Rev. Gregory Livingston said. “We have to go where the cries have to be heard.”

Livingston did not say if the protest group intends to try and enter Wrigley Field. The Cubs are set to host the San Diego Padres on Thursday.

Livingston’s protest march will be the second such gathering to shut down a major Chicago thoroughfare in less than a month.

Early in July, activist Catholic priest Father Michael Pfleger led a march that shut down one of the major highways feeding into the city. Windy City Mayor Rahm Emanuel quickly jumped to the father’s support and backed the protest.

The group is also demanding the exit of Chicago police Superintendent Eddie Johnson, another figure who prominently supported Pfleger’s march down the Dan Ryan Expressway.

This newest protest, though, may not find itself enjoying the same warm feelings from City Hall as Pfleger’s because one of Livingston’s demands is that Emanuel resigns over his failure to stop the mounting violence and growing murder rate.

Livingston’s chief complaint focused on the most recent police-involved shooting of South Shore resident Harith “Snoop” Augustus who was killed on July 14 after he allegedly attacked police while armed.

In keeping with the demands for top city officials to resign, the groups planning the march also noted that they have not asked for permission to undertake their protest.

“We are not asking anyone for permission at all,” Livingston concluded. “They (police) do what they have to.”

Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.

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