Highland Park boy won’t be able to enjoy Cubs game with dad – Chicago Tribune

Maybe becoming a grandfather softens your heart and opens your tear ducts, but as I watched a Mets-Cubs game at Wrigley Field on a Friday afternoon — because God wanted baseball played — I thought of friends and colleagues who grew up in Chicago recounting the times their fathers took them to Wrigley Field. The stories about Ernie Banks or Fergie Jenkins or Ryne Sandburg, the sights and smells and sounds, and maybe, when Mom wasn’t looking, the first sip of a cold Old Style.

But above all, to spend a nice day with dad. Even if 30, 40 or 50 years later, you don’t remember the game score.

Watching the game, I couldn’t help but think of this 2-year-old boy whose parents were shot dead in Highland Park on the 4th of July. He will never sit in the stands with his dad, who might have bored him with obscure details of the Cubs’ 2016 season, sing with him through the seventh inning and fall asleep on the way home.

And that makes me so sad.

—Jim Vespe, Mamaroneck, New York

While visiting Chicago, I noticed that several blocks of overhead street lights on South Michigan Avenue and other major downtown streets were burning all day, wasting electricity and creating pollution. useless. Illinois is expected to shut down its coal-fired power plants by 2045, which could lead to brownouts or blackouts.

I urge the City of Chicago, Commonwealth Edison and others maintaining overhead public lighting and commercial parking lots to regularly inspect their parking areas to ensure that the photocells or timers controlling the lights are working properly and if not, create work orders to fix lights that are on during daylight hours.

Where is the social concern and sense of urgency of the city, ComEd, news media and environmentalists to reduce pollution and minimize utility spending? They should ensure that electrical energy is not consumed unnecessarily, thereby reducing pollution, the likelihood of blackouts and brownouts, and government costs.

—Ron Ulmer, Normal, Ill.

The media wants to blame gun owners for America’s shooting problems. It’s just that the real culprit for all of our gun problems is Hollywood. I am 70 years old. Ever since I was a kid, starting with Roy Rogers, the gun has been regularly glorified in movies and on television. The gun was used to solve all the problems of the old west. As Hollywood got bloodier, the on-screen gunfights became more and more realistic.

If we’re going to try to raise a new generation free of gun violence, it has to stop on the big and small screens. Hollywood has baked gun violence into our brains!

—George Hovany, Gig Harbor, Washington

What is inflation doing to seniors? Our costs for health care, food, gasoline, natural gas and electricity are all rising, and those of us on fixed incomes can only respond by doing with less. Sure, lowering our body mass index is good for us, and eating less and using less energy is good for the planet, so I can live with those changes.

We own a house, which is a lifeline, but it requires maintenance, and with inflation, these expenses increase.

We have a freeze exemption for the elderly, which is a real plus. Savings help us take care of ourselves. This benefit has a fixed income ceiling. Normally this is not a problem, but social security benefits are linked to inflation, which is currently very high. The income freeze cap for seniors is not linked to inflation. In the near future, five years, our Social Security, which in reality only allows us to run our income on the spot, will push us above the ceiling of the income freeze for seniors. This means a blow to our budget.

A politician who ties the seniors freeze income cap to the Social Security increase, or at least ties it to 90% or 75% of the Social Security increase, will get our vote.

—Ed Rios, Berwyn

Polling stations in the June primary elections in Illinois were severely understaffed.

More than ever, it is vital for private sector employers to engage in civic affairs. Corporate sponsorships in the public interest have increased, as have contributions to campaigns aimed at reaching private interests. Companies could have a greater civic impact if they allowed employees to take paid time off to serve on Election Day as nonpartisan election judges.

Our election judges receive in-person, non-partisan training and are essential for fair and effective elections. At a time when companies are developing strategies to retain and recruit employees, the policy of paid leave to serve on Election Day demonstrates the company’s commitment to civic participation.

The general elections in November are not far away. Corporations and businesses should step up and support employees who want to contribute to their communities.

— Andrea A. Raila, senior tax analyst, Raila & Associates, Chicago

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