Don’t let limitations stand in your way

I must point out that I was judged exactly the same way you were [ The sting of being different, and living past it, Sandra Johnson, May 10]. I mean, I am 5-2. I did actually start out at 5-3, but, as everyone knows, you do shrink with age. My problem with being 5-2 is that I was the second oldest out of 6 kids, but the shortest out of all of us. I mean, my mom and dad were about 5-6 and 5-7. I did expect my brother to be the tallest, which he reached at 5-11. What I couldn’t handle was my youngest sister being 6 inches taller than myself. I mean, you try telling your younger sister off for touching your things and having to look upwards at her. My sisters used to always say it was so funny when I was trying to tell her off. They used to say, ‘Do you want a stool to reach her?’

At school it was worst. While having class photos done I was always put first or at the front. Sometimes it was between me and another girl, but mostly it was me. When I see her now, she laughs about it and points out that she actually grew taller than me. When we had family portraits done I was always pushed at the front so I could be seen. The same goes for wedding pictures. Now, I just wait for people to line up then I fit myself in. I also have to contend with my two kids being taller than me, and they are 12 and 14. I only hope that I done shrink too much.

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Brach site’s future?

I hope that the City of Chicago negotiated a deal with the filmmaker so that the entire old Brach plant will be demolished – not just one building. Austin is in desperate need of economic development and good living-wage jobs.

J. Pegues
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Stop predatory lenders

This bill does nothing to protect consumers from “predatory lenders” [New bill will protect against predatory lending, Karen Yarbrough, Sept. 6]. It only focuses on putting African-American and Hispanic small businesses “out of business”, and tracking citizens in our community. Illinois Senate Bill 1167 exempts the real “predatory lenders,” most of whom have gone out of business, leaving homeowners with no where to turn. There’s something wrong when legislatures allow kingpin lenders to be virtually exempt from the state database, but requires the little guys to spend money for counseling. Lenders have a long-term interest in the consumer and the property. To use an example: mortgage brokers don’t “make the cars”. They just sell the “cars” to consumers. The Illinois legislature would never hold car dealers who only sell the products of car manufacturers responsible for car defects. The same should hold true for mortgage brokers.

Concerned Citizen
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Budget cuts will hurt

I’ve been a CeaseFire outreach worker here in the Little Village for about a year, and I am proud to say that CeaseFire has come a long way from where it was last year in my community. I have just finished an apprenticeship at a body shop – I called it “Pimpin my Ride”. These kids went in learning what it is to have a job, and the reward was getting their paycheck. They received close to $700 for four weeks of work and job-readiness training. It wasn’t easy but it was successful. Due to the cutbacks, a lot of the brothers and sisters in my community were calling me up and asking me what’s going on and why is CeaseFire getting cut. Last year, they couldn’t care less about the program. They didn’t even want it, but now they don’t want to lose a good thing that’s going on here. They don’t want to lose it because then, what kind of guidance and help will be out there for their children? Who else is going to be able to help these individuals and the police? We’re the only ones they can trust.

Rodolfo C. Sosa
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