July 17, 2017

R. Kelly 'cult' / Illinois universities' struggle / 'Fundamental risk to … civilization'

R. KELLY ‘CULT.’ Chicago music journalist Jim DeRogatis documents accusations Chicago-bred R&B star R. Kelly (“I Believe I Can Fly”) is holding women against their will. One mother tells DeRogatis: “These girls think this man loves them.”

From the comments: “Knowing r kelly’s record, HOW could you let your daughter stand in his presence?” (Photo: Andrew Steinmetz.)

‘WE’RE IN A PRISON. (EXPLETIVE) HAPPENS.’ That’s how one Illinois Department of Corrections guard dismisses the still-unexplained presence of balls of what looked like notebook paper lodged in the throat of an inmate who died in state custody. The Tribune’s Steve Mills explores the mystery in detail.
The American Civil Liberties Union hosts a telephone town hall meeting on Illinois police reform Wednesday at 7 p.m.
The mother of a 9-year-old shot and killed in Chicago Friday night is in “total shock.”
Chicago’s weekend shooting total: 55—at least 11 fatally.

‘EVERY WEEK YOU’RE GUESSING HOW MUCH MONEY YOU’RE GOING TO GET.’ That’s a McDonald’s worker in New York City, complaining to Reuters about a lack of advance notice on scheduling—a problem that a new law there aims to address and that a proposed Chicago ordinance could also tackle.
Washington Post: As big companies like McDonald’s relocate to big cities, suburbs like Oak Brook are scrambling.
The Reader: What happens when you recycle wrong in Chicago.

ILLINOIS UNIVERSITIES’ STRUGGLE. Even with a new state budget in place, Illinois’ public universities have years’ of damage to undo.
A Democratic state rep says Gov. Rauner’s staff massacre “does not bode well for the next year-and-a-half for the functioning of government.”

THOUSANDS OF CIVILIANS DEAD. A Daily Beast investigation concludes that the air war launched to fulfill President Trump’s pledge to “bomb the s--t” out of the Islamic State has resulted in the deaths of more than 2,000 innocents in American-led attacks.
Foreign-born military recruits, promised citizenship by the Pentagon, are fleeing the U.S. in fear of deportation.

HOSPITALS’ HEALTH CARE WINDFALL. A Politico analysis finds that a decade after top U.S. hospitals pointed to their vast community givebacks as justification for keeping their tax-exempt status, their income has soared under the Affordable Care Act—even as they’ve cut back on the good deeds.
Trump’s administration has quietly killed $213.6 million in teen pregnancy prevention programs and research.

A HISTORIC ETHICS CRISIS. That’s the warning from the top federal ethics official who’s quitting the Trump administration in protest.
Meet the Lawfare blog founder who’s been “going to war with the president on a daily basis” and helped make liberals love the so-called “Deep State.”
A veteran reporter who covered the Watergate scandal: Comparing Trump to Nixon is unfair to Nixon.
RedState praises Snopes for a surprising defense of Trump.


HAPPY NATIONAL TELL YOUR FRIENDS TO SIGN UP FOR CHICAGO PUBLIC SQUARE DAY.Send a friend this link now, get thanked later.
* Not to be confused with National Invite Someone To Subscribe to Chicago Public Square Day. That was June 19.

‘A FUNDAMENTAL RISK TO … CIVILIZATION.’ Tesla and SpaceX founder Elon Musk, who’s called artificial intelligence one of humanity’s most pressing threats, is calling on the nation’s governors to take proactive steps to regulate AI before “it’s too late.”
George Romero, whose movie Night of the Living Dead birthed the modern zombie genre, is dead—for now.
And so is Oscar-winning Mission: Impossible star Martin Landau—a former newspaper cartoonist who turned down the role of Mr. Spock on Star Trek.
That the next star of Doctor Who will be a woman isn’t really that controversial. [Update 12:23 p.m.: Or maybe it is.]

PERSONAL FLASHBACK. A Marvel Comics book with a fan letter from me hit the stands 50 years ago today. It was the first of many Marvel (and its competitor, DC) would publish—including this one—but it was one of the biggest thrills of my childhood, and it fueled a passion for words that continues to this day. Thanks for reading. And thank you for taking the time to write to Square.

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