Lolla ‘waiting game’ / ‘Weird, racist codeword stuff’ / Run on buns

Lolla ‘waiting game.’ As we watch to see how much COVID-19 spread during Lollapalooza, Politico’s Shia Kapos writes, “It’s hard not to look at the past four days and think they were anything but worrisome.”
Mayor Lightfoot stands by her decision to let the festival happen. (Cartoon: Keith J. Taylor.)
Gov. Pritzker changed his mind and didn’t go, “out of an abundance of caution,” according to his press secretary.

‘Florida is not a success story.’ But Popular Information’s Judd Legum recalls that, before Florida became “the current epicenter of the pandemic,” reporters “lionized” its governor’s “reckless approach” to COVID-19.
Media writer Tom Jones reviews the media’s recent “missteps in covering COVID.”

George Washington did it. PolitiFact says a tweet did not tell a lie: The man who would become the nation’s first president indeed ordered his troops inoculated against smallpox.
The Pentagon’s wrestling with how to follow Washington’s—and President Biden’s—lead in the present pandemic.
The president’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony Fauci, foresees more “pain and suffering”—especially for the unvaccinated.

‘How is it humanly possible for a detective to investigate a crime if they have to keep shifting to another crime?’ That’s the mother of a 23-year-old woman killed in June—commenting for a Sun-Times investigation that tallied more than 1,000 victims and 126 dead in six years of Chicago mass shootings … and just two convictions.
Over the weekend: At least eight dead and 45 wounded in Chicago gun violence …
 … but, compared to last year, Chicago murders were down slightly in July.
The Conversation: The pandemic pushed defendants to plead guilty more often—including innocent people confessing to crimes they didn’t commit.

‘That’s weird, racist codeword stuff.’
Reader Shara Miller’s tip—and photo—to Chicago Public Square last week about a sign affixed to a public parking lot in Lincoln Square triggered a Block Club Chicago report.
The sign—since removed—alluded to a proposed affordable housing complex (May link).

Ambulance shock. On a new Last Week Tonight, John Oliver shared his outrage at learning that emergency medical services aren’t considered essential in 39 states—including Illinois—which explains in part why ambulance rides are so damned expensive …
 … and how Chicago’s EMS system has been stretched to the breaking point.
He cited a November report from CBS 2 Chicago, in which a 911 operator can be heard telling a caller, “We’re out of ambulances.”
Oliver didn’t make pioneering late-night TV critic* Aaron Barnhart’s list of “The 25 Most Impactful People in Late-Night TV History.”

‘I have lung cancer even though I’ve never smoked.’ Comedian and Oak Park native Kathy Griffin (2015 link) gave that news to her followers on Instagram.
The Daily Beast: How a Chicago-born former darling of Occupy Wall Street “became one of the biggest political YouTubers on the planet … while dangerously whitewashing the far right.”**

A run on buns. The company that makes the poppyseed bun, which the Sun-Times’ Neil Steinberg hails as “the one unsung actor” in Chicago’s iconic hot dog, is “desperately” seeking workers in the pandemic.
Block Club Chicago has launched The Ultimate Hot Dog Newsletter.


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* Witness this radio interview, 25 years ago this summer.
** Your Square columnist in 2014 benightedly celebrated his ascendance.

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