I don’t watch a lot of television. Thus I have been spared the incessant re-election commercials of the current Mayor of Chicago.
However, when I have seen him on television, his new kinder, gentler persona reminds me of the domestic violence abuser who in order to get the victim to drop the charges says and does everything he can to try and weasel his way back into her good graces. Like the abuser, he promises that it was just a one-time thing. He pleads that he has learned his lesson. He claims that he has changed. He wines and dines her as he slithers around trying to be comfortable in the new skin that doesn’t fit right.
Why, he has even offered to remove 50 red light cameras (after having closed 50 schools, after having not gotten 50 percent of the vote — something about that number, but I digress). And some Chicagoans just like the battered victim are starting to believe the hype. They see the big puppy dog sad face. They want to believe that he has learned his lesson and won’t do it again. But many of us have been there, done that with abusers and liars. We know firsthand that promises made won’t be promises kept. And if he is re-elected, the old persona will emerge worse than the previous incarnation.
One of the commercials I did see was the one that criticizes Chuy Garcia by splicing some interview questions, which present a false picture of what Chuy said. That commercial ends with the line, “Creative sources of financing? Uh-oh.”
Now coming from the mayor’s camp, I was astonished that he would dare to make such an accusation.
In my book that’s akin to the pot calling the kettle black. Why? Well, I quickly used my Chicago Public School edumacated memory banks to recall the young man that Rahm Emanuel (OMG … I said his name) handpicked to be Chicago’s comptroller. Many of you may have missed the story, but not I. So let me tell you about Amer Ahmad.
Mr. Ahmad was Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s top financial advisor. Mr. Ahmad had been under investigation for five months by the federal government for a multimillion-dollar kickback, bribery and money-laundering scheme from his time as the deputy treasurer in Ohio.
I won’t bore you with the details, but when the feds just about had Mr. Ahmad in their clutches, he left his job here in Rahm’s office and fled to his homeland of Pakistan using a phony Mexican passport, a forged Pakistani Visa and birth certificate along with a suitcase filled with $175,000 in good ol’ USA greenbacks.
Now Rahm’s office has claimed that they audited our city records and Mr. Ahmad didn’t do any wrongdoing while being Rahm’s handpicked choice to be Chicago’s comptroller.
But as Pakistan won’t be extraditing him back to America anytime soon, Mr. Ahmad’s 15-year sentence is in absentia. Mr. Ahmad represents the questionable need of the mayor to go outside of this city and state to find members of his team as if there weren’t anyone in Chicago who could do the job.
Also, every low-income resident and worker should place squarely at the feet of Rahm Emanuel the craziness that went on in June, 2013 when the CHA gave a contract to the Kopley Group at 5200 N. Sheridan to hand out applications for Section 8 housing, and the lines stretched down the street and around the block for three days just to get an application.
They had been told to give out numbers so as not to create the need for people to have to stand in line. But they didn’t listen — an obvious reflection of people who were amateurs in an area with limited parking and inability to handle the deluge of applicants.
Lastly, I am not surprised at the recent news that Rahm’s mayoral aides are all white and his office cabinet staff racial makeup is 17 whites, five blacks, four Hispanics and two Asians. Black folks have never been his priority — unless it’s election time.