Misplaced pride

Today’s “most popular” article at the Trib is a letter by Thomas Condon with some South Side imperialist pablum:

This is an essential part of the difference between the North Side and the South Side. The North Side is home to the more “tender” Chicagoans, those latte-swilling, status-car-driving dandies who think that Lincoln Park is a tough neighborhood. Many are just enjoying their “urban experience” for a few years before moving back to Schaumburg and buying the inevitable minivan.

The South Side is where the real meat of Chicago resides. These are the people and neighborhoods who built America with steel mills, won World War II with manufacturing and continue to supply the real muscle for Chicago’s economic engine.

And we aren’t moving to Schaumburg. Ever.

Well, no. The north side and downtown areas successfully reinvented themselves for the post-industrial economy, but not the south side — which still suffers from higher unemployment and lower incomes. Low per-capita income doesn’t sound like “muscle for Chicago’s economic engine.”

And while they might not move to Schaumburg (hardly anyone does, as it’s a business only town), white south siders WILL move to Oak Lawn or Bolingbrook or Olympia Fields, and black south siders will move to Park Forest or University Park. Indeed, millions have — how else did huge swaths of the south side end up so denuded and depopulated?

One thought on “Misplaced pride

  1. Thomas Condon is right. It may not be pretty but the truth hardly ever is. Last time I checked Michigan Ave was the highest retail tax generator for the city and for the state. Do you know what the second highest was? It wasn’t in River North, The Gold Coast, Lincoln/Wicker Park. It was South Lawndale,a.k.a Little Village, on the South West side. How does this enclave of poor, uneducated immigrants create more sales tax revenue for the city/state than all of the Yuppie/Affluent areas around?

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