Fast-lane felonies / ‘A party gone crazy’ / Hungry?

Fast-lane felonies. Facing a reelection campaign in which he’s being portrayed as soft on crime, Gov. Pritzker was planning today—at Chicago Public Square’s 10 a.m. email deadline—to announce arrests in a rash of Chicago-area expressway shootings.

See it here.
A Chicago alderman responds to the second shooting within months at a Wicker Park bar and music club: “Twice starts to feel like a pattern.”

‘Mask confusion.’ Illinois Playbook’s Shia Kapos says a Downstate judge’s ruling allowing some Illinois school districts to go without masks in the pandemic—overruling Pritzker’s mandate—has triggered uncertainty statewide …
 … but they’re still a must in Chicago classrooms.
Author and Deadspin founder Will Leitch: Children “need to get back to being normal kids, at normal school, again.”
For the first time since the pandemic’s onset, New Jersey’s governor was set to end that state’s school mask mandate.
The U.S. pandemic death toll has passed 900,000.

‘A party gone crazy.’ Veteran columnist and journalism professor Charlie Madigan says the Republican National Committee’s declaration that the Jan. 6 insurrection was “legitimate political discourse” confirms that “we don’t need these … people anywhere near the levers of power.”
The Associated Press: Donald Trump’s complaints about “racist” district attorneys—who just happen to be Black—echo the “white replacement theory” championed by white supremacists.
Popular Information shines a spotlight on a history of catering to the right-wing on race at the College Board, which designs AP courses and the SAT.

Sorry, not sorry. Spotify CEO Daniel Ek says he condemns pandemic misinformation monger Joe Rogan’s use of racist language—and supports Rogan’s decision to remove 70 episodes of his show from Spotify’s catalog—but adds, “I do not believe that silencing Joe is the answer.”
Ek pledges $100 million—the amount the company reportedly is paying Rogan—to license, develop and market “audio content from historically marginalized groups.”
Author and WBBM Newsradio anchor Dave Berner: “The real monster is not Rogan, it’s the platform.”

Hungry? Welcome to Chicago Black Restaurant Week …
 … whose map can direct you to a participating eatery near you.

Square mailbag.
Reader Rich Stewart writes from West Ridge to take issue with a Tribune editorial linked from Thursday’s Chicago Public Square—a piece that complained Gov. Pritzker’s budget plans fail to address “tough choices”: “Ever notice how, when people in positions of power and privilege talk about ‘tough choices,’ those choices always come down to taking resources away from people who already have little? … It seems to me as if standing up to powerful corporations, calling for one’s fellow beneficiaries of privilege to pull a little more weight in taxes, defending public education, even facing down the gun lobby—things like that—for the likes of our politicians and the Tribune’s editorial board, might be the real tough choices, and choices that could end up doing us all some good.”
Your thoughts are always welcome here.
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