Dear editor,

Talk about fiddling while Rome burns! We are cutting trees while the planet burns. I hardly know to whom I should address my thoughts. I feel we have lost our collective minds. In this precise moment, in this exact summer, when temperatures across Minnesota and the United Kingdom, known for their cold climates, reached 100 degrees F, when all of the south of Europe is burning, when Australia is both burning and flooding and when much of the American West and Midwest are both burning and sweltering with heat waves well above 100 degrees, in this precise moment, I say the City and the Obama Foundation decide it is a good idea to cut down thousands of mature trees in Jackson Park. We used to call large city parks the green lungs of our cities. Well, our municipal government has removed a lung... To those who say the trees will be replaced, this is smoke and mirrors. The trees will not be replaced on a one-to-one basis, many of the new trees that are eventually planted will not survive under conditions of climate crisis, and those that do survive will need many, many years before they offer the shade and relief from searing heat that the older trees provided. To those who say all this destruction is necessary to bring economic development to the area, I can only say that I have found all the discussion about the OPC, and economic development outrageous. Why have people on the South Side been told they must choose between economic investment and public green space? Who tells anyone in the city's wealthy neighborhoods they can have public green space OR investment, but not both? And that's not all, We are told we must must sacrifice hundreds more trees and a nature preserve to the creation of a pro-level golf course. And will these new privately held "facilities" on our once public park lands in fact bring development to the neighborhoods? I wonder. But he point is, the planet is burning and one thing is sure: the loss of trees and parks will make our lives hotter, our air quality worse, and will deprive us of places to go as summer temperatures soar.

Meantime, for reasons that are mysterious, many dozens of trees are falling along the roadside tree lawns or parkways throughout South Shore. Talk to the people who live here, and they will tell you that these are mostly healthy trees going down. Callers to the City asking for new tress are told the wait is 1 1/2 years. I am not aware that that Chicago has undertaken any meaningful large-scale project to renew the city's tree canopy since Mayor Daley left office. And now the City announces that downtown Chicago will open its streets to NASCAR racing????!!! 

Surely, we have lost our minds. 

Ada Shissler

(3) comments


Thank you to everyone here and in our community that worked very hard to oppose the mass removal of our Jackson Park trees and the construction of the Obamanation that will be a 23 story high rise, personality cult temple built in our beautiful lakefront, Jackson Park.

This is IMO The worst violation of the Daniel Burnham plan to keep our Lakefront Park free and open to the public....


Well, it looks like we lost this one.

Let's move to the next lakefront park issues - saving the Limestones on the 55th Street Point and opposing the dome on Soldier's Field hitting up us Chicago $ tax payers for $ 2 billion in corporate welfare for the Chicago Bears.

Let the Bears move to Arlington Heights where their suburban fan base is.. We can remove the Soldiers Field parking lot and restore this area to park land as was done to Megs Field airport.

We need to learn from this great lakefront park loss to the Martha's Vineyard OF powers that be. No one is mass removing 150 year old trees and building 23 story high rise temples on Martha's Vineyard MA where the Obama elites now hang out.

Ross Petersen

I agree wholeheartedly. This is madness, and the golf course plan will bring more removals - 2,670 more trees will come down. This is also an offense to environmental justice, the right of access to nature by all. Well said, Thank you.

J, Hoyt


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