Hi. Nice to be back. What keeps Chicago Public Square returning after pleasant vacations? Support from readers like you. And now, the news:
■ Her post on Facebook has drawn more than 11,000 sympathetic responses.
■ A Tribune editorial: Illinois needs to give police “authority and resources to track down people who may possess weapons they no longer are allowed to have.”
■ The Henry Pratt Co. reopened today, but employees won’t be working.
Outrage, then bafflement, over Smollett case. People who came out in support of Empire star Jussie Smollett are struggling to figure out what to think now that the case has taken some weird turns.
■ CNN: Police sources say evidence suggests Smollett orchestrated the attack against himself.
■ A Facebook discussion: “Which would be better news: That the Smollett attack account was real, or that it was fake?”
False. That’s PolitiFact’s finding on Chicago mayoral candidate Susana Mendoza’s claim that her rival, Bill Daley “wrote ‘the blueprint’ for record Springfield gridlock” under ex-Gov. Rauner.
■ Sun-Times columnist Laura Washington: “Daley 3 would advance one of America’s best known dynasties. Voters love dynasties. Do voters want to make that kind of history?”
■ Pundit David Axelrod’s forecast: A “brutal” runoff.
■ The city clerk’s race may yet lose two of its three candidates.
■ Study up: The Chicago Public Square voter guide is here.
Charter school strike ends. The Chicago Teachers Union and the Chicago International Charter School have a tentative deal that’ll put kids back in class Tuesday …
■ … and raise teachers’ salaries by an average of almost 35 percent.
Bible belt. Sweeping change is underway at the scandal-scarred suburban Harvest Bible Chapel megachurch …
■ … but several congregants consider it insufficient.
Blame Trump’s ‘national emergency’ on … The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Will Bunch says previous administrations handed Donald Trump the keys to a “dictatorial” presidency: “Obama increasingly turned to executive fiat to keep ‘Dreamers’ in the United States, act on climate change, and implement parts of Obamacare. Most liberals praised Obama because they liked the policies—instead of questioning how a future demagogue might up the ante.”
■ Protests were planned for around the country today—including one in Chicago at noon.
■ Trump’s appointments to federal appeals courts have reached historic highs.
■ Ex-acting FBI Director Andrew McCabe to CBS: “I was fired because I opened a case against the president of the United States.”
■ Saturday Night Live’s “Trump,” Alec Baldwin, suggests Trump’s tweeted call for “retribution” constitutes “a threat to my safety and that of my family.”
■ On WBEZ six years ago, a President’s Day quiz.
Hair fairness. New York City’s Commission on Human Rights says discrimination against people based on their hairstyle will henceforth be considered a no-no. (Editorial disclaimer: Yay.)
■ Axios: American women are now more educated than men—but their participation in the workforce is shrinking.