War! What's it Good For? Besides Protesters? - NBC Chicago
Ward Room
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War! What's it Good For? Besides Protesters?



    Mayor Daley sounds more like his Bizarro version with each passing day.

    First, he recommended expanding the powers of the inspector general’s office to oversee city hiring—something the mayor previously fought hard against by creating the Soviet-sounding Office of Compliance.

    Now Daley wants war protesters to hit the streets -- Really? From the guy whose father cracked protester heads during the 1968 Democratic National Convention? Really?

    Bizzaro Daley made his emotional plea at the Chicago Neighborhood Development Awards ceremony last week, questioning why he doesn’t see protestors gathering at the Dirksen Center.

    “Where are they?” Daley said. “They've disappeared! What happened? I thought war was evil? Where are the people who believed in their heart against George Bush?”

    Hold your lives dear! On this St. Crispin's Day! Sorry. Carried away there.

    Daley's exhortations sound nice on paper/blog post, but he (and the city) have sung a different tune in the past.

    To wit: when Sen. Jame Meeks wanted to hold protests about disparate funding for rich and poor schools during a Cubs game at Wrigley, but Hizzoner asked him not to -- we've waited too long for the Cubs to be good, please don't disrupt 'em with something so petty as equal access to education.

    To wit, part deux: also make sure the protest doesn’t spill on to Lake Shore Drive, where 543 people were arrested for protesting the Iraq war in 2003. At the time, some alderman on the city’s Police and Fire Committee wanted to launch hearings into the mass arrests, but the move was stalled by Daley ally and committee chairman, Ald. Isaac Carothers. And then when the city refused to issue a permit to protestors wanting to march down Michigan Avenue for the war’s one-year anniversary, Daley defended the city.

    "They have a right to be against war, but it's costing you taxpayers a lot of money," Daley said in 2004.

    Who knows what Bizarro Daley’s next move will be—maybe he’ll buy back the city’s parking meters and rebuild Meigs Field? Yes? No? Anybody?