I’m saying goodbye to Chicago. I won’t miss what the city has become.
With the benefits of living in Chicago becoming more difficult to enumerate and skyrocketing property taxes making it unaffordable, the only choice my family has is to leave.
Earlier this year, the Cook County Assessor’s Office decided that the home I’ve owned for 30 years should be assessed at a value more than 100% greater than it was just a year ago, and significantly more than I could reasonably expect to sell it for. And today Mayor Lightfoot announced a planned property tax increase, which she had the audacity to compare to the price of Italian beef sandwiches for a family of four.
So what is my family getting, instead of beef sandwiches? Tax money supporting an unstable school system that continues to prove itself incapable of meeting even the basic needs of its ever-declining number of students? Fear that when my nearly adult children take the CTA to visit friends, they may not safely make it home? A seemingly oxymoronic commitment to simultaneously promote NASCAR races while cracking down on drag races across our city’s streets?
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With the benefits of living in Chicago becoming more difficult to enumerate and skyrocketing property taxes making it unaffordable, the only choice my family has is to leave. I will miss the city as it used to be, but will certainly not miss what it has become.
Erica Salem, Lakeview
Always keep fighting to protect rights
Years ago, my mom told me about when she marched down the streets of Washington, D.C. in protest of Pennsylvania Gov. Bob Casey Sr.’s 1992 challenge to Roe v. Wade. She was just in college back then, and yet she found the courage to stand up to what she thought was wrong. I remember hearing this story and thinking about how scary it must have been to have your rights under attack by a person who wouldn’t face the consequences of their actions, and how despite these attacks, I was grateful to still live in a country where her rights (and the rights of others who can get pregnant) were protected. My god, how times have changed.
This awful scenario has become reality, with people across the country living in fear of having their supposedly protected rights stripped away because of politics. It terrifies me that politicians like Republican gubernatorial candidate Darren Bailey, who has said that the Holocaust “doesn’t even compare” to the “loss of life” caused by abortion, could be in charge of “protecting” the rights of women, as well as Jews, such as myself, in my home state.
Although things look grim now, it is important to remember that it is not too late, nor will it ever be too late, to keep fighting for what we know is right, just like my mom did all of those years back. Whether that be lobbying politicians, writing a letter to the editor — like this one — attending protests and demonstrations or simply voting, there are a plethora of everyday actions we can take to help build a country that will fulfill its promises and protect the rights of everyone.
Alexander J. Torzewski, Lincoln Park
No comparison to Watergate
Are we surprised by the Republican reaction to the raid on Donald Trump’s home? They are still demanding action on Hilary Clinton from 2016 since they have yet to find anything. And of course, there is the 2020 election which Republicans still claim was stolen, despite a total lack of proof.
Trump, as usual, is clueless by comparing the FBI raid to the theft at Democratic National Committee headquarters at the Watergate Hotel. The thieves in Watergate were not the FBI or any other government agency. Perhaps someone could suggest to Trump that the Watergate burglary was another example of Republicans trying to steal a legitimate election, so maybe he’d rather not remind people.
Laurence Siegel, Manteno