Daily archives: July 2nd, 2010

Chicago Approves Tough New Gun Restrictions

From the Sun-Times:

Grumbling about a U.S. Supreme Court they say is out of touch with America’s cities, Chicago aldermen voted 45-0 today to approve a rushed-through compromise gun ban.

The law, weaker than the gun ban tossed out Monday but with some even stronger new provisions, allows adults in Chicago to buy one gun a month, 12 a year, but they must pay registration and permit fees and take five hours of training.

Within 100 days, anyone who wants to keep a gun in the city will have to register, get their training and pay the fees. Also within 100 days, any of the estimated 10,000 Chicagoans convicted of a gun offense will have to register at their local police station like sex offenders.

That last bit took me by surprise.

It better hold up in court. I like it.

Mark Kirk Settles Nothing, Fails to Set Record Straight

I’ll leave this to someone much more objective in politics than I am: Carol Marin at the Sun-Times.

Carol was at a press conference this week where Republican nominee for the U.S. Senate was going to take questions about his several "misstatements" regarding his military service. Kirk did not satisfy Marin.

From the Sun-Times:

There are, by my count, approximately 10 misstatements or exaggerations of his military service. When, I asked, is a misstatement a mistake and when is it a willful untruth, a lie?

The congressman’s response: "I, I would say that some are quite small when you reach back 30 years. And with regard to the military award, that was my error. And I owned it and apologized for it. And like I said in the speech, [this] is to correct the record, to apologize, to release your official Navy record and then stand on that."

Kirk’s supporters in the audience voiced their disapproval with those of us who sought more candor, less carefully parsed responses.

That’s OK.

They’re partisans. We’re the press. And this is politics.

Unless there are new revelations to come, it’s time to move on.

One Kirk supporter told me the problem with these campaigns is that candidates have to be so careful about what they say and how they say it for fear someone like me will go over their claims with a fine-tooth comb.

Well, no kidding. That’s what happens during political campaigns.

And the public deserves to know.

Myths And Falsehoods About Elena Kagan’s Supreme Court Nomination

ENEWSPF is carrying a quite comprehensive article from Media Matters for America that addresses – heck, blows out of the water – every myth and falsehood that has been floated about Elena Kagan, including the following:

  • Myth: Kagan is "anti-military"
  • Myth: Kagan is "radical"
  • Myth: Kagan’s praise for an Israeli Supreme Court justice shows she’s a radical (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan’s thesis shows she’s a socialist
  • Myth: Conservatives can credibly argue that Kagan’s personal and political views are relevant to confirmation process
  • Myth: "Kagan Standard" means Kagan must answer questions about issues that will come before the Supreme Court
  • Myth: Kagan’s Goldman Sachs role taints her nomination
  • Myth: Conservative opposition is based on the substance of Kagan’s nomination
  • Myth: Obama used "empathy" standard rather than fealty to law in choosing Kagan
  • Myth: Kagan is unqualified because she hasn’t been a judge (UPDATED)
  • Myth: Kagan has said judicial experience is an "apparent necessity"
  • Myth: Republicans would be justified in opposing Kagan because she lacks a judicial paper trail
  • Myth: Kagan is "Obama’s Harriet Miers"
  • Myth: Kagan’s record shows that she will rubber-stamp war-on-terror policies
  • Myth: Kagan’s 23-year-old statements about the Establishment Clause suggest she’s hostile to religion
  • Myth: Kagan’s recusal obligations would be "extraordinary"
  • Myth: Kagan "can become" too "emotionally involved on issues she deeply cares about"
  • Myth: Kagan not "fair-minded, impartial" and doesn’t have "proper temperament to be a judge"
  • Myth: Kagan is anti-free speech
  • Myth: Kagan supports banning books
  • Myth: Kagan wanted to "ban pamphlets" by individuals (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan is anti-Second Amendment
  • Myth: Kagan compared the NRA to the Klan (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan banned ROTC from campus
  • Myth: Kagan "cover[ed] up" plagiarism at Harvard Law
  • Myth: Kagan’s citation of Marshall’s statement that the original Constitution was "defective" is controversial
  • Myth: Kagan’s memos to Justice Thurgood Marshall prove she’s outside mainstream (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan’s campaign donations are unusual
  • Myth: Kagan supported Saudi sponsors of terrorism
  • Myth: Kagan accepted a gift by Saudi prince that brought Shariah at Harvard (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan acted improperly in Warner Creek case
  • Myth: As SG, Kagan indulged her own views rather than defending the law
  • Myth: Kagan is avoiding "traditional interviews" with the press
  • Myth: Kagan supports holding terror suspects "without due process" (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan believes that foreign law trumps constitutional law (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan wants to protect sex offenders in the Catholic Church (NEW)
  • Myth: Kagan supports cloning human beings (NEW)

Read the entire article here.

Violence Escalates at Taste of Chicago

If you’re going to the Taste of Chicago, be careful.

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

Three teens — including a 15-year-old boy who was seriously hurt, and two others who got caught in a “melee” — were stabbed near the Taste of Chicago Thursday night.

In an apparently unrelated incident around the same time and at the same Loop intersection where the boy was seriously hurt, police officers Tased a man.

The boy was walking down the street with a group of friends in the 200 block of South State Street when they encountered a group of males fighting about 9:25 p.m., according to police News Affairs Officer Ronald Gaines.

The boy felt a pain in the back and realized he had been stabbed, Gaines said.

Police News Affairs Officer Amina Greer said the male stabbed is 15 years old.

That stabbing happened near the intersection of Jackson Boulevard and State Street and one person was taken in serious condition to Northwestern Memorial Hospital about 9:18 p.m., Fire Media Affairs spokesman Joe Roccasalva said.

The Tribune called it a "rowdy night."

That’s an understatement:

Some people attending the Taste reported other violence, which apparently brought out a large contingent of riot-clad police to the area.

Taja Jarrett, 20, was getting out of her retail job in the Loop at 8 p.m. when she said she first noticed large crowds in the area. She and Shanice Brown, 17, were planning to check out the Taste  festivities when they saw a fight break out near one of the entrances.

The two walked west to Dearborn Street where they encountered another large brawl. They also saw an increased police presence, including officers on horses, ATVs, on foot and in cars. Dozens of helmeted on all-terrain vehicles ushered a large crowd west on Jackson Boulevard away from Grant Park.

Other reports are coming in from friends on Facebook of people getting caught in the middle of fights on Metra trains coming from the Taste.

Be careful.