Downstate Illinois follows rules ignored in Chicago

Posted: May. 21, 2020 5:00 pm

To The Herald-Whig:

"State of Hypocrisy" -- Illinois has a new nickname.

We are all too familiar with the various mandates handed down by the Illinois governor. But why do the same rules not apply in his beloved Chicago? And why is the Chicago mayor, who frequently appears with him during his press briefings, special and exempt?

On May 12, a graduation ceremony was conducted for 88 new Chicago firefighter EMT graduates. Mayor Lori Lightfoot gave the message, and the new firefighters were congratulated by her and Fire Commissioner Richard Ford II. There were no handshakes, but elbow-bumps instead. Special training class sizes were accommodated earlier this spring in order to complete the training.

Family and friends reportedly did not attend. The entire 55-minute video and press release was posted on the WGN-TV website, with portions on other sites as well.

Yet, even high school graduations with fewer than 88 seniors will not enjoy any type of ceremony because of "the rules."

It is not my intent to vilify the accomplishments of those 88 men and women on having completed their six months of training, but high school seniors are marking the completion of 13 years of education. We are sick and tired of the double standards and hypocrisy in Illinois, and specifically coming out of Chicago.

Downstate Illinoisans have been forced to abide by ridiculous rules sent out from Chicago, which are openly violated in Chicagoland. The embarrassment of calling Illinois "home" continues, while the reputation of Chicago and Cook County lives on -- alive and flourishing.

Greg Gronewold

Carthage, Ill.