As Obama’s monument to himself in Chicago is imperiled by lawsuits, Chicago Tribune implies poor blacks will be victimized

Barf alert! Judging by this article in the Chicago Tribune, there must be serious worries that the planned giveaway (a 99 year lease at 10 cents a year) of 19.3 acres of precious, irreplaceable lakefront Chicago park land to a private monument to former President Trump Obama is in trouble. Starting with a picture of a pensive-looking black woman in shadows – worth a look here – the piece pulls out all the victimization stops, claiming, “ anxiousness … has swept over some residents and communities on the South Side as they brace for a possible long wait, a bitter fight or even another grand disappointment."

The article by Lolly Bowean and Jeff Coen features residents who regard the “Obama Presidential Center” as an unalloyed benefit to the poor communities that are nearby – “a new historical treasure to [the] already culturally rich African-American community. 

Gee, if the community is "already culturally rich," why does it need another cultural monument? Oh, that's right: "jobs and investment."

She [Paraisia Winston, the woman pictured in shadows] believes the center will spur investment and economic development in her South Side neighborhood — one that has long struggled to secure basic amenities like a major grocery or a recognizable clothing store.

Absent is any mention of the community groups opposed to the project. And nobody seems worried about gentrification or rising rents as outsiders flock in.

I’d be very surprised and pleased if the Trib has a record of opposing lawsuits by environmentalists that have delayed or stymied productive investments that do not give away publicly-owned resources to private groups. Readers are invited to cite any of them of which they might be aware.

Correction: I must have had a mental block writing "President Obama" even with the adjective "former" in front of it.

If you experience technical problems, please write to