Bad policies, not gun makers and sales, are driving Chicago’s violence: Ken Griffin

The violence destroying our city is the result of a failure to prosecute criminals, a lack of support for police and progressive left legislation that prioritizes criminals ahead of law-abiding citizens.

Ken Griffin at the Economic Club of Chicago in October 2021.

Ken Griffin at the Economic Club of Chicago in October 2021.

Economic Club of Chicago/YouTube

Citadel Securities is the largest equity market maker in the U.S. We help people buy or sell stock in companies they select to achieve their financial goals — whether to buy a home, fund their children’s education or grow a nest egg for retirement.

The Sun-Times recommends that we divest ourselves of any company that manufactures guns, hoping it will impair their future financial prospects. What the Sun-Times neglects to report is that about 40% of American households own a gun. My grandmother wrote about how she and her husband loved to go bird-hunting together. In a much more depressing vein, people living in crime-ridden communities purchase guns for self-defense. Unlike the Sun Times, I won’t paint with a broad brush every gun owner or company that sells guns.

I will not embrace today’s cancel culture nor engage in amateurish virtue-signaling based on blind ideology. I prefer to engage on thoughtful policies that will make a difference in the lives of our citizens. I have consistently voiced my concerns about Chicago and Citadel’s long-term place here, in order to push our political leaders to improve the quality of life for Chicagoans. I care deeply about our city and state.

Chicago continues to be engulfed in senseless and rampant violence. The number of people murdered in 2021 was the highest in 25 years, and concern over the government’s inability to keep people safe drove record gun sales. The violence destroying our city is not the result of these legal gun purchases, but rather a failure to prosecute criminals, a lack of support for police and progressive left legislation that prioritizes criminals ahead of law-abiding citizens — policies perpetuated by Gov. J.B. Pritzker.

Instead of deliberately misconstruing our role in the marketplace to parrot sloppy political opposition research from the governor, the Sun-Times should shine a light on his failures and politics-first mentality. Shaming our governor into addressing our crime pandemic will save lives and return Chicago to being a city we can all be proud of. Now, that is journalism that really would advance the public interest.

Kenneth C. Griffin, Citadel Securities

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Racial equity in social work

The nation’s almost 720,000 social workers entered the field because they have a strong desire to help people and make our communities and world a better place to live.

Each day, social workers touch millions of lives. In fact, you, a family member, or a friend have likely already been helped by a social worker. Social works are practically everywhere, in schools, hospitals, mental health facilities, veteran centers and child welfare agencies.

Social workers have been in the forefront of helping create this nation’s social safety net. At Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois, we are a social work agency committed to being champions for racial equity in child welfare. We do this because children of color historically come into care more often, stay longer and fewer return to their families.

Children of color need your support. Consider contacting your lawmakers and urging them to support DCFS Bias-Free Child Removal (Senate Bill 3720), to establish a pilot program addressing racial disparities in child welfare. Implicit bias too often unconsciously affects people’s actions. This new program would utilize a blind removal strategy when deciding whether a child should be removed from their parents’ home.

This Social Work Month and beyond, we urge you to speak up for the children and families within the child welfare system. Be a strong, positive voice for change on their behalf.

Mike Bertrand, president and CEO, Lutheran Child and Family Services of Illinois

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