Three weeks into the New Year, and I’m not feeling anything new. The battles faced by those living in Austin are numerous. We are a small segment of this country suffering from poverty and many individuals have fallen into despair. 

Yet I gladden that Chicago wasn’t one of the first places chosen by Obama for his initial “promise zones.” First off, the announcement by the president didn’t include any new money. Basically what the president’s new program offers is helping areas so they can more easily maneuver the maze of paperwork/information to get to existing federal monies. 

Shouldn’t that be happening anyway? But I digress. 

I don’t want Chicagoans to miss out on any federal monies for which we might qualify, but at the same time, the president’s overlooking his hometown is a commentary on how little he thinks of his former chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel. As Emanuel prepares for his re-election attempt, he would have used that announcement as a pat-on-the-back moment. For all the folks who ran around calling him Obama’s boy and how he would be able to bring home the bacon, this lack of inclusion by the president shows how little the president thinks of Emmanuel. 

Have you been paying attention to the number of building with X’s on them all over the black neighborhoods? The city of Chicago website claims that those X’s indicate an empty building. Please. That only speaks half the truth. Think about it. Those “X’s” represent just how fast the city can work when it wants to. It means that if you want to keep living in Chicago, it’s time to stand up and make this your Alamo. The current mayor, who seldom to never went into a black church during the election campaign, seems hell-bent on continuing that tradition by removing black people from the city and thus he’ll never have to go into a black community. 

One of the slickest ways to go after land is to raise the taxes so high that the people living there can no longer afford to stay. Our property tax structure is based on what one’s house is worth if you were to sell it. Yet if you don’t sell it, you’ll never realize the increased value. I think we should fight to have our taxes based on what we paid and not what the house appraises for. Especially when we had several years of economic downturn and our taxes should be dropping to reflect the decreased value. Instead, the tax assessor increases the multiplier, thus making the taxes stay the same or even go higher.

I know many people don’t have a lot of interest in politics. And I understand because dealing with politics is tiring. However, politics affects each and every one of us from the birth certificate we must have to acknowledge our being born to the death certificate that records our final day of life. 

I’m also monitoring how Emanuel has created a taskforce for the closed Dominick’s stores. I for one would like to see Cub Food reenter the Chicagoland market. The reason they initially left was because of Wal-Mart’s entry into the city. Yet with Dominick’s demise, they could return and be a success. They are still in business in Minnesota.