‘It's scary on the CTA’ / At last / Journalism!

‘It’s scary on the CTA.’ Actor and PBS Wild Travels host Will Clinger was one of several victims of violent attacks along the Red Line this week.
He tells the Tribune: “The lesson is, I guess, A) don’t have your phone out at night on the ‘L,’ and B) if you get your phone stolen, don’t chase the people that stole it because I paid a fairly hefty price.”
A shooting at the Brickyard Mall on the Northwest Side has left a woman dead and one man in custody.

Free rides. The Chicago City Council’s given final approval for a lottery to give away 100,000 $50 transit cards and 50,000 $150 gas cards.
Apply here.
The RTA offers suggestions for using the CTA, Metra and Pace “to reconnect with nature in the Chicago region.”
A food truck plaza is in the works for Logan Square.

At last. For the first time in almost eight months, Chicago has an inspector general
… who has a request to investigate the city clerk—who’s running for Illinois secretary of state.

‘Schools … have municipalities do their dirty work.’ A ProPublica/Trib investigation concludes that, because Illinois law forbids schools from fining students for things like truancy, vaping and fighting, local cops are doing it for them.
Midnight madness: The Better Government Association ponders the question of why Illinois’ legislative process almost always wraps up late at night.

‘The pandemic is over. Oh wait … it’s not.’ If you’re confused, Poynter’s Al Tompkins reassures you that you’re not alone.
Dr. Fauci clarifies: “We’ve now decelerated and transitioned into more of a controlled phase. By no means does that mean the pandemic is over.”
Bloomberg: Some researchers believe omicron and its sub-variants emerged from the small minority of patients with long, long COVID.
Columnist Dick Tofel: “The death rate from the pandemic would likely be more than triple what it has been without the vaccines.”
Your Local Epidemiologist Katelyn Jetelina: Vaccinations are coming for kids under 5
… but a pair of physicians writing in the Trib conclude that the next phase of addressing COVID-19 in children will be accepting it as part of life.
UNICEF and the World Health Organization report that measles cases worldwide have surged through the pandemic—and other diseases are likely to do the same.

‘Why say which president gave the judge a job?’ NPR’s public editor, Kelly McBride, tackles that question from a listener.
Axios: “Trump-appointed judges are writing their opinions with provocative language … offering an audition for a future Supreme Court opening.”
Not so toasty: Remember suggestions earlier this week that House speaker wannabe Kevin McCarthy might be “toast” after the revelation that he suggested privately that then-President Trump should resign? Republicans reportedly gave him a standing ovation Wednesday.

A Huskie investment. Facebook and Instagram parent Meta has expanded to $1 billion—and 200 jobs—its plans for a data center in DeKalb

Journalism! A coalition of Chicago news organizations is going to court against the Chicago Park District’s effort to seal a lawsuit alleging that Mayor Lightfoot made obscene and defamatory statements.

Chicago Public Square is a Community Media Awards sponsor.

Chicago Public Square mailbag. Reader—and eagle-eyed proofreader—Pam Spiegel objects to a line in yesterday’s edition: “I want to take issue with your ‘ouch’ comment regarding Kamala Harris not being in close contact with Biden recently. The whole media has implied … that she’s an unwanted outsider (with visions of Veep in our heads) … when the media actually has no idea why she hasn’t had ‘close contact’ in a few days. I think these snarky insinuations … add to the negative media coverage of her.”
Square calls to the witness stand Trevor Noah from last night.
 SpiegelChris Koenig, Mike Braden and Paul Clark made this edition better.

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