Lightfoot abandons Chicago’s progressives

It’s baffling to think the mayor convinced voters that she stood for something different than Emanuel did.

SHARE Lightfoot abandons Chicago’s progressives

Mayor Lori Lightfoot speaks during a June press conference at the Lionel Hampton Fine & Performing Arts School. Listening are (From left) Chicago Board of Education member Elizabeth Todd-Breland, Board President Miguel del Valle and Board Member Dwayne Truss. Ashlee Rezin Garcia/Sun-Times

Watching Lori Lightfoot run for mayor on a progressive platform, just to have her immediately go back on her many campaign promises, has been incredibly disheartening. 

Whether it be the mayor’s failure to follow through on a commitment to create a dedicated fund to support the homeless, her support of subsidies to real estate developers for Lincoln Yards, or now a teacher’s strike.

It’s baffling to think that Lightfoot convinced the voters that she stood for something different than former Mayor Rahm Emanuel did.

As Lightfoot continues to abandon the progressive voices she courted in the election, it’s been invigorating to see the Chicago Teachers Union show solidarity for not only their teachers’ pay, but also for students who are living in unacceptable conditions. 

A recent report by the Chicago Coalition for the Homeless, for instance, estimated that 16,000 students are homeless. 

Chicago deserves better than Lightfoot’s faux-progressivism. As everyone tries to spin the strike for their own ends, I am thankful the CTU is standing up for the city.

Patrick Gilsenan, Uptown

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Illinois, support climate change bills

While my hometown of Naperville is far away from Antarctica or the equator, the dangerous effects of climate change can be seen here, too, already.

Each year, flood waters are higher and last longer. Each year, more diseases and pests once controlled by our formerly brutal winters become more common.

Even if mass losses in animal and plant life seem far off, the threats to food supplies, predictable weather and safe travel are right here, right now. But while the current administration pursues a short-term, greedy and destructive agenda for a few more years of profit, we can do the right thing, right now.

There is so much to gain, and Illinois can be a bold leader for a greener, brighter, more prosperous future.

As someone who works with low- and medium-income communities who experience the most flooding and air pollution, I know the problems are tough. But pursuing political, economic and social agendas with fighting climate change in mind generates shared prosperity for all.

Right now, the 100% Clean Economy Act is one of the first steps to a better future. This legislation is designed to transition the U.S. to a 100% clean energy economy by 2050.

While it is light on the details, leaving that instead to the experts, it sets our agenda on the correct path. I hope that my district’s representative, Rep Sean Casten, as well as other representatives, recognize what a great step forward this is and become a co-sponsor and support this bill.

To a bright, clean, prosperous future for all.

Kyla Donato
Coordinator at Greenprint Partners

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