In the "new normal" the concept of personal responsibility has all but been abandoned and replaced with a virus called outrage culture. In other words, the strategy is to never admit wrongdoing and to always blame others for the calamities you created. This has been the go-to philosophy of Democrat run cities in the US for many years and it has allowed leftist community leaders to thrive in those urban environments. However, diverting guilt does not necessarily save people from consequences.
In the case of metropolitan areas like San Francisco, LA, Portland, Seattle, New York, Chicago, etc. the hammer is now hitting hard because of the actions and policies of the political left. Businesses are leaving these towns in droves, including major corporate chains, due to exploding crime rates that lead to violence and theft. In nearly every city run by leftists crime is on the rise.
The Democrat response has been predictable. Leftist politicians claim that red states are the "real problem" when it comes to crime, but in reality, it is the theft and homicide in blue dominated cities within those states that drags them down. In the vast majority of cases if you remove the Democrats from the equation, you remove the crime.
They claim that accusations of crime in Democrat regions are "overblown" by conservatives, yet, business owners (and many other people) are leaving Democrat cities and states to relocate to conservative areas. The dynamic is undeniable, but instead of fixing the problem leftists continue to play the victim and make demands.
In the case of Chicago, they replaced one truly horrible and incompetent mayor (Lori Lightfoot) with a potentially even worse mayor (Brandon Johnson). Johnson along with other Chicago Democrats blames large corporations for the decline in city infrastructure and the spike in lawlessness. His accusations, of course, come only days after companies like Walmart announced they would be closing multiple stores because of extensive losses (often due to theft) and lack of security. These people do not learn because they do not accept responsibility.
Walmart decided to close four stores in the Chicago area because the crime and shoplifting is way out of control. Instead of taking responsibility and taking steps to reduce the crime in their neighborhoods (and maybe NOT voting for the anti-cop, pro Defund the Police candidate),… pic.twitter.com/n4oRXfNTk8— Zeek “Hoggroast” Arkham 🇺🇸 (@ZeekArkham) April 15, 2023
Other major corporations exiting Chicago include Tyson Foods, Boeing, Caterpillar and Citadel.
Crime in Chicago has been a plague, with property related damages rising over 48% from 2019 to 2022. Chicago had nearly 700 homicides in 2022, which is lower than those in 2021 - the worst year for shooting deaths since the widespread gang violence of the 1990s - but robberies were up nearly 20%. The point is, Democrats can no longer pretend as if crime is not an issue, so instead they are falling back on the old habit of scapegoating and gaslighting.
Most interesting of all is their attempt to throw social decay into the lap of companies like Walmart, while at the same time attacking those companies for leaving. If these corporations are the cause of all their ills, then why are leftists so enraged that they are closing up shop? It makes little sense because they don't have their stories straight.
The truth is probably somewhere in the middle. Some corporate chains siphon money out of communities and drive smaller businesses to close, but then add to that the deconstructionist policies of woke Democrats thinking they can socialize the economy and defund the police. It's a recipe for total disaster which is what many blue cities are now facing.
Ultimately, though, it may not be the inconveniences of closing businesses that Chicago leaders are so upset about. Rather, it may only be that they are embarrassed. Each fleeing business adds another crack in the unstable foundation of the leftist narrative that they are the "solution" and everyone else is the problem.