A bit about Roger Keats:
Roger Keats was an honoree for Black History Month in 2009 and was honored at Operation PUSH in 1989 for leading a bipartisan, multi-racial coalition fighting corruption in Chicago and Cook County. His background includes being a former Illinois State Senator (1976-92) and an Officer of the United States Army. In 2011, Roger found himself to be outraged by the corruption and high taxes of Illinois and decided to retire to Texas. “I was sick and tired of subsidizing the pack of crooks running Chicago and Illinois.”
What inspired you to write Chicago Confidential?
Someone has to fight these crooks and I thought a novel (faction not fiction) was a better way to do it than a dry, academic recitation of how many crooks have gone to jail (number is too big to keep an accurate count). My award winning book is the "true" story of what is really happening, right now, on the streets of the murder capital of America, Chicago. An unknown fact is that Chicago has lost one million residents since Mayor Daley first took office. This is the story of why they have left. In the history of the world, only Detroit has lost more people and still exists. This is no holds barred Chicago today as seen through the eyes of a Chicago Police Detective who is a unique and interesting character himself. The book is packed with action and true stories of the day to day corruption that is leading to the decay of one of the world's great cities.
What other stances or steps have you taken to fight the “crooks” outside of writing Chicago Confidential? Are there any current projects that you would like readers to know about?
I led the legislative coalition to clean up the Cook County Courts after 100+ Judges and Court personnel went to jail in Operations Greylord and Gambat. I was honored by Operation PUSH for our actions and called (kiddingly) the Honorary Cochair of the Black Caucus which was a big deal for a Republican Senator. As you can guess I was hated by the Chicago Machine Democrats for the same. Worst judicial corruption in recorded American history.
I was an undercover mole working with legendary political reporter Dick Kay to catch ghost pay rollers on the state payroll.
I led the coalition of Republicans and Black Democrats who stopped the Council Wars (Racist White Democrat crooks in the City Council who fought Mayor Harold Washington from 1983-86) from coming to Springfield and crippling the Mayor.
Sponsored legislation to save the RTA/CTA in 1983 (spent 3 years perfecting the legislation) and did it with Mayor Washington. It took huge amounts of corruption, ghost pay rolling, insider contracting and pay roll padding out of mass transit and kept the system running very well until Gov. Blago screwed it all up. This gave Mayor Washington a huge victory with bipartisan support to show he could get things done, albeit only with Republican assistance.
This list should give you a feel for the kinds of things I have done.
Was it difficult to write from the perspective of a police detective? Did you research the role before beginning?
Yes and Yes! I have worked closely with Chicago police officers over the years and relied heavily on their advice. The story wasn't that hard...after all most of it is simply true stories rewritten in the book. My imagination isn't good enough to make all of this stuff up. As the epilogue explains...these were real stories about the real corruption endemic in the Chicago Democrat Machine and the price the minority communities pay for this hopelessly corrupt government.
What is the message you hope to relay through your work?
This type of open corruption is under reported and often ignored. I want people to see what is happening to a great city because the leadership is hopelessly corrupt. Chicago's citizens are suffering because of their government.