Dawn Turner Trice, a columnist for the Chicago Tribune,
wrote a great column today. She took the opportunity to turn the current brouhaha about Donald Trump's
obnoxious sign into a discussion about urban blight on the city's
south and west sides.
I applaud this. Those of you who have read this blog for a while know that
I tend to harp on the abandoned properties that have compromised so many
neighborhoods in Chicago. If Mayor Emanuel wants to address a real crisis
involving buildings in Chicago, then he needs to step up his game and
address the massive blight created by the foreclosure process.
This isn't to say that there haven't been
any efforts to hold the banks accountable for their mess. It's just that
those efforts haven't been enough. In some cases, tough ordinances
were walked back after judicial review. In others, there just isn't
the money in the budget to make a big difference. Regardless, the Emanuel
administration (and the Daley administration before it) just doesn't
display a real sense of urgency with regard to fixing the problem.
Thank you, Ms. Trice for bringing this issue to the foreground while The
Donald has brought the eyes of the nation to bear on Chicago. Maybe someone
with more clout will listen.