‘Stop wasting COVID tests’ / No vax proof required / ‘A worrisome sign’

‘Stop wasting COVID tests.’ A physician who specializes in lab medicine suggests in The Atlantic that Americans without COVID-19 symptoms should be easing up on the swabbing and “leaving tests on shelves for other people.”

‘An enormous problem.’ Gov. Pritzker vows to shut down “fly-by-night” COVID testing sites.
COVID hospitalizations in Illinois have hit record levels …
 … the overwhelming majority of them for the unvaccinated …
 … prompting hospitals to postpone elective surgery …
 … and the governor says he fears the worst is yet to come.
Nationwide: More than a million new cases were reported Monday—shattering worldwide records. (Clarification, courtesy of CNN: “The first report of the week includes a significant backlog of cases.”)

No vax proof required. WTTW lists places exempt from Chicago’s new pandemic health order—including grocery stores and airports.

Three scenarios. Axios Chicago lays out a trio of outcomes from today’s teachers’ union vote on a switch to remote learning during this pandemic surge …
 … which could put the district in a bind to provide for families lacking computers and internet service.
Chicago Public Schools paid bus companies millions not to lay off workers through the pandemic … but guess what.

‘A worrisome sign.’ Popular Information: Although dozens of major corporations cut off donations to Republican election objectors last year, only seven are clearly standing by that pledge in 2022.
Politico catches up with Trump administration officials and Republicans who quit in protest after the Jan. 6 insurrection and then never went after Trump again.
ProPublica: In the months leading up to the Jan. 6 attack, Facebook hosted a surge of misinformation and insurrection threats—and its response was late and ineffective.
The AP: Teachers are on the front lines of the culture war as they struggle with what to teach about Jan. 6.
The Conversation: Not all polarization is bad, but the U.S. could be in trouble.

The only candidate ever to have beaten Barack Obama in an election. Ex-radical, ex-alderman Congressman Bobby Rush is calling it quits after 15 terms.
Rush in a never-rebroadcast 1997 [date corrected] radio interview: “I would send a message to police officers: We honor you, we respect you … but we will not tolerate police brutality.”

‘We don’t feel our safety issues are being listened to.’ The first Midwest Starbucks to see a unionization push is at 155 N. Wabash Ave.
In a deal that the Sun-Times’ David Roeder says marks “a literal power transfer,” ComEd has bought the building that housed the Chicago Board of Trade’s largest trading floor, using the space to power the systems that put it out of business. (2008 phot: Will on Flickr.)

‘News engagement fell off a cliff in 2021.’ But, Axios says, ratings for mainstream news sites fared better than ratings for hyper-partisan and political publishers.
For the sake of American democracy, The Washington Post’s Margaret Sullivan calls on publishers to put “pro-democracy coverage in front of your paywall, just as you’ve done with much of your COVID coverage.”

‘You need to revisit this.’
Reader Mike Janowski takes issue with Chicago Public Square’s presentation yesterday of a Sun-Times interview with a convicted carjacker who recommended people not buy high-end cars: “Gee, using that logic, perhaps we should warn women about wearing attractive, sexy or revealing clothing, lest they become rape victims? Blame kids for playing outside, making them easy targets for a pedophile’s ministrations? And why not … blame people for walking around outside, where they become easy targets for stickup perps? Though perhaps this is a valid warning to folks who flaunt their wealth with their automotive choices, aren’t we past the ‘blame the victim’ mentality here in 2022?”

Got a shot?
If you have a hankering to help capture Chicago news photographically—and maybe see your work here in Chicago Public Square—join the Square group on Flickr, where you can find great work by people such as Harry Carmichael, seen here in a self-portrait.

Subscribe to Square.