Move over, Jane Byrne and Harold Washington! Although we suburbanites don’t get to participate in the circus, we still get to watch from the cheap seats. Cheers to the people of Chicago on their progressiveness in rejecting the Old White Man’s Club (OWMC) and choosing a black woman to be the next mayor. We just don’t know which one yet.
However, the fanfare starts and ends there. The same voters re-elected a dinosaur, federally indicted OWMC President Ed Burke, in a ward that is 80% Hispanic, despite the fact that his two challengers were Hispanic. Add to that the failure of the voters in the 13th and 23rd wards to reject Mike Madigan lapdogs Marty Quinn and Silvana Tabares in favor of candidates that dared to challenge the status quo.
What’s the old saying — one step forward, two steps back? Yes, the next mayor will no doubt bring new ideas and a fresh sense of hope to a city in desperate need of both. But as long as the voters keep electing the same old minions, nothing will really change. Millennial voters were a no-show, which helped the OWMC and hurt the hopefuls. All of their cries and marches and rallies about gun control, women’s and gay rights, and anti-Trump rhetoric mean absolutely nothing if they stay home on Election Day.
Brings to mind another old saying: The more things change, the more they remain the same.
Scot Sinclair, Third Lake
A Green New Deal is a good bet for Chicago
The real national emergencies of our time are inequality and climate change. Both demand bold solutions. A Green New Deal is a bold and necessary plan to tackle both, at the speed and scale that science and justice demand. It’s a major opportunity to help us complete the transition to a 100% clean energy economy, while creating millions of good, high-paying jobs.
In Chicago, a Green New Deal would be an opportunity to invest in our communities and expand many of the good things already taking place. All public buildings will be retrofitted for energy efficiency; our manufacturing sector will be revitalized to support 100% clean energy; local ecosystems and native species will be reintroduced or maintained, as with the prairie revitalization efforts across Cook County; and communities that lack access to healthy food, proper education, good jobs, and adequate public transportation will be at the forefront of the Deal.
We have the opportunity to support our communities while prioritizing environmental care. Ensuring a clean, sustainable Earth is everyone’s responsibility, and political and corporate officials must commit to bold climate action now.
A Green New Deal is intended to be a broad, transformational change. That’s what is needed to deliver better jobs, cleaner air and water, and a more resilient Chicago.
Evan Callan, Ravenswood