Readers Attribute Discontent in Chicago to Leadership and Social Ills

When Chicagoans were questioned about their city in a recent poll by the NY Times, they couldn’t help but to share what they love about it, along with what could use major improvement. Education seems to be the common cry:

“I came to Chicago in 1974 and love this city. That said, I am not deluded about its myriad problems. There is plenty of blame to go around. Surely police misconduct has been a serious problem for a long time, yet the majority of cops are trying the best they can to do a very difficult job. The Force needs clear, unambiguous rules and swift action when misconduct occurs. One would think that the Police union would want miscreants off the Force as much as anyone else for bad behavior drags them all down.

“I am ambivalent about Emanuel. He is doing good things bringing corporations into the city. We need their business, their taxes, and their customers and employees. On the other hand, the jobs they bring will not help the city residents who most need jobs.

“Improving our schools should be a priority. I do not agree that closing schools was such a horrible thing. It is not surprising that many were in poor neighborhoods, but it makes no sense for a bankrupt system to operate large old buildings with few kids in them. Effort/money should be poured into improving CPS [Chicago Public Schools], especially on the South & West sides. Although I support and respect teachers, I am not sure how a strike removing kids from classrooms, burdening parents, and missing class time really helps rather than hurts the children.

“Our poor neighborhoods need better public transport, better schools, safer streets, job training, access to decent child care and much else. How to pay for it is, as always, the question.”

— Anne-Marie Hislop, Chicago

Read entire story at NY Times.

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