Letters: Superb festival highlights city’s architecture

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The Old Colony Building, know for its rounded bays, is one of the 2016 sites for Open House Chicago. I Scott Stewart~Sun-Times

Writer-statesman Goethe proclaimed that “architecture is frozen music.” Composer Richard Strauss taught us that “music is how our feelings sound.” As a lifelong chamber-music cellist and a psychologist for decades, I deal daily with the myriad feelings that are evoked in people.

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Open House Chicago, presented by the Chicago Architecture Foundation, is celebrating its sixth year on Oct. 15–16. That superb festival is one of our city’s least known and recognized treasures. Last year’s Open House Chicago was an outstanding success. The palpable boundless energy and fascination of countless visitors demonstrated how much people crave culture, tradition, and history. Enthusiastic curiosity was in evidence everywhere. People mingled and interacted with one another.

A wealth of cultural, artistic discoveries await all, especially the unfamiliar. The public will be offered free access for two days to 200 historic buildings and unique settings in the Chicago area that are not usually open for such scrutiny. The potential for learning and educational growth is limitless, and numerous neighborhoods will be represented. What more might one ask for?

Our beloved city is the finest museum of architecture in the country. Open House Chicago encourages people to partake of the splendid offerings as much as they choose. One will simply walk around and be awestruck.

In our contemporary, beleaguered, and challenged city, there is reason for hope when people from diverse settings enjoy their free time meandering among infinite varied pieces of history. It will be an unparalleled learning experience, and I am confident that such an opportunity may help us to see a return to civility and elegance.

And to think that only the week before, on Oct. 9, Chicago was host to the internationally renowned Chicago marathon, its 39th. That event attracted people from over 100 countries, more than 40,000 runners (and their families and friends), and benefited from the community support of over a million spectators on a beautiful and clear autumn day.

Not bad, Chicago.

Leon J. Hoffman Lake View

Bad apples

When murders hit their peak over the summer, Chicago Police Supt Eddie Johnson declared that Chicago’s problem is not a police problem, but a societal problem. Shortly after that, the Sun-Times published data showing that New York and Los Angeles police do a much better job statistically of solving their murders. Then Mayor Rahm Emanuel announced that he was hiring 1,000 new police officers as quickly as possible, and Johnson turned around and acted as if this move would clear up Chicago’s murder epidemic. Apparently more uniforms on the streets now equal more trust, education, jobs and less desperation for the society that Johnson sees behind all the murders.

Subsequently in the Sun-Times, Johnson lamented that an officer endured a physical beating rather than using her gun because, she reportedly said, she didn’t want to end up in the news for shooting an unarmed civilian.

From the superintendent on down to the street cop, when will the CPD realize that it was their bad apples, their bad cops, who have brought on this horrible crisis of confidence in the CPD? Not the press. Not the politicians. Not Black Lives Matter. Not the victims.

Ed Bryant, Evanston

Government failure

How is it that government bureaucrats, notably Cook County, and the City of Chicago

who have proven themselves fiscally incompetent can legislate the imposition of socialism on businesses? They are now mandating five days of paid sick leave per year. They can’t fund their own employment costs, yet dictate what other should do. It’s like the designers of the Titanic dictating how to build unsinkable ships.

Earl Weiss, Skokie

Height of hypocrisy

I disagree with editorial that the GOP must “dump Trump”; it would be the height of hypocrisy.

Trump has not disguised his volatile temperament or racist/sexist views in any way throughout this campaign and succeeded in garnering support from voters and party leaders alike. But after a tape reveals mysogynistic remarks — consistent with his personality and ego — everyone goes bananas.

Yes, it was beyond immature and stupid, but is it really worse than calling Mexicans rapists or women pigs or banning all Muslims or making fun of handicapped people?

Trump is clearly the kind of guy who brags about himself — his money, his business, and his sexual conquests. This is consistent with his character so why has this suddenly upset party leaders enough to call for his ouster when insulting many other segments of American society did not?

Trump, sadly, represents the views of millions of people and has always been totally upfront about his prejudices. At this point in time, he deserves to finish out his candidacy. It would be hypocritical for his party to dump on him now.

Carol Kraines, Deerfield

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Writer believed that without knowing history, people can have no perspective on on life today.