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The [Thursday] Papers

This column was delayed this morning because I have a master's degree from Northwestern and still can't make a paper snowflake. (It was for a Sandy Hook relief project.)

Reminds me of this:

Brian: Did you know without trigonometry, there'd be no engineering?

Bender: Without lamps, there'd be no light.

Not that having a master's degree from Northwestern is a credential I like to brag about. To the contrary; it's the kind of credential that makes me immediately suspicious of others. I'm far, far more proud of my experience at the University of Minnesota. And I kind of hate Northwestern, though I did get a great deal of value (not monetarily, of course) from the program they let me design there and my associated work with the Newspaper Management Center, which I loved. But that's another story. I totally couldn't make a snowflake come out right.


The Beachwood mobile office is once again at Filter in Wicker Park today. They're doing one of these deals.

The Sandy Hook kids will resume going to school in a nearby town where a high school friend of mine sends his kids. Their school was locked down too that day as a precaution.


Snowflakes for Sandy Hook.


Local Lawmaker Urges More Mental Health Funding After Sandy Hook.


"It's hard to find another state that has cut more from its mental health budget than Illinois," NBC5 Chicago reports.

"The Land of Lincoln now ranks fourth in the nation when it comes to cutting mental health programs. From 2009 to 2012, state leaders cut roughly $187 million from state-sponsored programs, according to a report by the National Alliance on Mental Illness."


"If there is any point of agreement in the polarizing issue of gun control it is that people with mental problems shouldn't be anywhere near a loaded weapon," Kurt Erickson reports for The Southern.

"But, as lawmakers begin to discuss a policy that would allow qualified Illinoisans to carry concealed weapons, serious questions have been raised about one of the key lines of defense in keeping potentially dangerous people from owning guns.

"Under Illinois law, people found mentally incompetent or not guilty by reason of insanity are not qualified to hold a Firearms Owner Identification card.

"A recent audit of the FOID program, however, found nearly all counties in Illinois were not submitting court orders to the state that would ban mentally ill card holders from owning firearms."


"The shooter's aunt, who lives in Crystal Lake, Ill., has been the most vocal member of the Lanza family since the 20-year-old went on a shooting rampage that left his mother and 26 adults and children dead," Huffington Post Chicago notes.

"[My family] didn't want me to go to the press but I thought someone from the Lanza family should be represented," Marsha Lanza said to ABC Chicago.


The key term in this piece is "narrative fulfillment."


"As a presidential candidate in 2007, Obama offered rhetoric on the need to bolster gun-control laws that was similar to his remarks at a memorial service this week in Connecticut," Bloomberg reports.

"'Our playgrounds have become battlegrounds,' he told a packed church on Chicago's south side, as he challenged the government, gun lobby and public to reduce violence. 'Our streets have become cemeteries. Our schools have become places to mourn the ones we've lost. The violence is unacceptable.'

"Obama at the time called for better enforcement of existing gun laws, tighter background checks on gun buyers and a permanent assault-weapons ban.

"After his first year in office, though, the Washington-based Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence gave him its lowest grade of 'F' for 'failed leadership' on the issue."


"If we are not getting right the need to keep our children safe, then nothing else matters," Obama said, after explaining that he's been too busy being president to take action on gun violence.


"[Rahm Emanuel], through a spokeswoman, declined [a Bloomberg] interview request. He defended the president's gun record in an interview yesterday on the CBS television network.

"'The president's record is very, very clear on this,' he said. 'It's clear when he was a state senator. It was clear when he was also a U.S. senator. It was clear also as president.'"



"Emanuel was an aide to President Bill Clinton when an assault-weapons ban was passed by Congress as part of a crime bill. That ban expired in 2004, and there have been calls to restore it following the Connecticut shootings.

"The mayor didn't deny an anecdote in the book Kill or Capture that quoted him as using an expletive in anger after Attorney General Eric Holder said in 2009 that the president backed a ban on assault weapons. Emanuel was concerned that such a push would be a distraction.

"'President Obama always stood for getting this done,' Emanuel said yesterday, adding that the president didn't do anything about gun control because he was 'dealing with a myriad of issues,' including a struggling economy and health-care legislation."


Rahm now.

Rahm then.

The Gospel According To Inez
Mourning a Chicago icon.

Field Museum 2.0
A makeover for the ages.

The Blue & Orange Kool-Aid Report
The perfect litmus test.


The Beachwood Tip Line: Crystal.


Posted on December 20, 2012

MUSIC - Millions Of New Guitar Players.
TV - "One America News" is AT&T.
POLITICS - When Wall Street Came To My Mobile Home Park.
SPORTS - Tonyball, Bears On The Run, Eyes On The Sky & More!

BOOKS - China Holding Swedish Publisher.


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