Charged up / Who's masked? / Your day, please

Charged up. Accused by the feds in a years-long bribery scheme, Illinois’ dominant energy company, ComEd, has agreed to pay $200 million to settle.
The news release announcing the deal implicates House Speaker Michael Madigan.

‘This is not going to be a school semester like any other.’ Gov. Pritzker is warning parents to prepare for an unprecedented fall in the face of the pandemic.

Pritzker’s suing to ensure Illinois schools require kids, teachers and staff to wear masks. (Cartoon: Keith J. Taylor.)

Who’s masked? The New York Times has graphed the odds across the U.S. of meeting five people in random encounters, all of them with faces covered.
ProPublica: Hospitals are running short of young doctors because of President Trump’s June proclamation barring the entry of most immigrants on work visas.
USA Today says it screwed up by soliciting and publishing a column from presidential trade adviser Peter Navarro, who accused Dr. Anthony Fauci of being “wrong about everything I interacted with him on.”

[Buzzer sounds.] Vacuous ex-game show host Chuck Woolery has deactivated his Twitter account after his son contracted COVID-19, about which Woolery had previously tweeted that “everyone is lying.”
NPR is under fire from its own public editor for a decision to let U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr lie on the air, unchallenged.

‘Speaking of our children,
They are pawns in a great fight —
This battle for our culture
And by our I should say white.’
The Tribune’s Mary Schmich shares a new TrumPoem.
After White House press secretary Kayleigh McEnany condemned Mayor Lightfoot as “derelict” for not groveling to the president seeking help to fight crime in Chicago, the mayor stung back on Twitter with an epithet that invokes white women abusing privilege.
The Conversation: How Jesus got to be white. (Including the word of the day: Syncretism.)

Finally. Seven years after Divvy rental bikes arrived on Chicago’s streets, Chicago’s Far South Side is getting some …
 … as part of a plan to expand Divvy citywide by 2021.
The U.S. Consumer Financial Protection Bureau is suing Chicago-based mortgage lender Townstone Financial, accusing it of discouraging prospective Black applicants from applying for home loans.

‘We’re excited to bring Rainbow to the people.’ Chicago’s beloved Rainbow Cone is serving its multihued ice cream treats in a roving truck that you can follow on Instagram.
The Museum of Science and Industry reopens Aug. 1, with free admission for two weeks.

‘No one loves Westfield Old Orchard like former Johnny Rockets employee Esther Povitsky.’ The Tribune talks to Skokie-raised comedian Povitsky about her Comedy Central special debuting tonight at 10 …
 … parts of which were recorded in the suburbs.
The Sun-Times’ Richard Roeper calls it “brilliant.”

Your day, please. Filmmakers Ridley Scott and Kevin Macdonald are inviting the people of earth to video-record themselves next Saturday, July 25, for “a time capsule for the ages,” a documentary sequel to their 2010 work, Life in a Day.
Here are the submission guidelines.

Chicago Public Square comes your way thanks to support from readers including Mike Janowski, Janet Grimes, Jennifer Packheiser, Jeanette Mancusi, Donna Peel, Peter Kuttner, Chris Handzlik, Suzanne Vestuto and Joanne Rosenbush. You can join them with a one-time tip (nice) or an ongoing pledge (nicer). And if you can’t chip in now, no guilt: You help Square grow simply by opening and reading each day. Or by sharing it with a friend. Thanks to all.

Get Square by email