I wrote what I did not out of lack of empathy, or racism, but out of long-standing frustration with Chicago’s poorly managed finances. -- Kristen McQuearyTake note: Whenever a writer has to explain to readers that they're not really a racist or lacking in empathy -- they probably are.
Many readers thought my premise — through my use of metaphor and hyperbole — was out of line. I certainly hear you. I am reading your tweets and emails. And I am horrified and sickened at how that column was read to mean I would be gunning for actual death and destruction.Yes, you read it right. She's not apologizing. She's only sorry we took it that way. She's shocked that we read her orgasmic descriptors (think Meg Ryan in When Sally Met Harry) of a storm in Chicago — "an unpredictable, haughty, devastating swirl of fury. A dramatic levee break. Geysers bursting through manhole covers", the way we did.
Yes, she's even reading our tweets and emails (there have been hundreds) and says she hears us. How could she not? I can't remember blow-back like this to any previous Tribune editorials. Not even the one where the board called for a Mussolini-type dictator to run the schools.
But there's no apology here.
What there is, is a repeat of her litany of lies and distortions about post-Katrina New Orleans offered up without a shred of evidence or documentation. It starts with her framing some imaginary post-flood, democratic discussion -- a discussion that never happened.
In the years after the storm, residents were divided. Some wanted everything rebuilt the way it was. Others wanted to move forward in a new direction.Really? How nice. And when and where did this conversation take place? And who was supposedly at the table? The thousands of teachers and other public workers summarily fired from their jobs? The thousands of more, mainly African-American residents who lost everything, including family in the flood, and who were driven from the city and who's 9th Ward homes were never rebuilt? Maybe McQueary would care to document this great debate.
|Duncan remarks were "dumb".|
McQueary is even worse -- she apologizes for nothing.
Both Duncan and McQueary see themselves as embattled change agents who, facing resistance from the poor, ignorant masses, are forced to take advantage of natural disasters if necessary, to impose their will on the rest of us. Duncan called his imposed top-down test-and-punish reforms and charter school privatization strategy, the "civil rights issues of our time."
McQueary moves even farther into bombast, donning her Che Guevera beret and bandoleros and imagining that she's a guerrilla of some sort fighting the good fight, this time liberating the Tribune's corporate patrons from the yoke of retiree pensions and rising taxes.
Chicago needs urgent, revolutionary change. We can’t keep borrowing our way into bankruptcy. That’s what was in my heart.I'll have what she's having.
What was I thinking? What I was thinking: http://t.co/db3dzoEEnU— Kristen McQueary (@StatehouseChick) August 14, 2015