Not everyone loves Oak Park

Opinion: Columns

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter

By John Hubbuch

Oak Park is a little like Notre Dame football or Morton's Steakhouse. Lots of people love it. Lots of people hate it. I only recently became aware of the depth of the animus when I began writing and blogging about my son's likely move from Oak Park to a different western suburb.

Now to be sure, I knew that people made fun of us. John Kass, the Tribune columnist, from time to time refers to our village as "the People's Republic of Oak Park." Transgender nights at Winberie's, nuclear free zones and Salvadoran sanctuary have over the years begged for sarcasm from both those inside and outside the village. But I'm not talking about a head-shaking, what-what will-they-do-next exasperation. Reading some of the Internet chatter, I have detected something a little deeper in the animus toward Oak Park.

Some of it is obvious. People move here for whatever reason, and after a while the congestion, high taxes, parking and general urban-ness of the town get to them. Like sailboats and home swimming pools, things don't turn out the way you expect. Disappointment turns to resentment and anger when you're upside down on your mortgage, and you're now stuck in a community you no longer want to be in. I get that.

I also get those who don't like us because of our liberal politics. If the only news you watch is Fox, and you own all of Glen Beck's books, then you probably view Oak Park as Trotsky Town, ground zero of political correctness, white guilt and the victimization mindset.

But for some folks, Oak Park represents the better road taken. They have decided that higher crime rates and taxes are worth it in order to live in a diverse community. To be sure, people live here for lots of reasons other than diversity, but I dare say many of us moved here in part because it made us feel good that we not only talked integration, we walked it. It is uplifting to choose to educate our children in a place where African-American children are physically in our classrooms rather than just in a book in those classrooms.

Some people resent Oak Park because, deep down, they feel guilty. We represent a better ethos. There is actually a place where a reasonable possibility of diversity exists, and yet you choose not to live there. For these people the relentless celebration of our village's diversity is cause for at least a twinge of guilt, followed by resentment.

Granted, we contribute to the tension. We can be smug and self-righteous about our decision to live here. We are on the side of the angels. If someone we know moves out, our eyebrows rise slightly when they say they're moving because of crime or taxes. We think we know the real reason. Their decision casts a fleeting tiny cloud across our mind — that maybe the taxes and the crime aren't really worth it. We dismiss the concern, and become strengthened in our resolution and our righteousness.

Maybe people live in Oak Park because it's close to downtown and the schools are decent. End of story. But I do think many villagers also choose to live here because of its shared history and values connected to integration and diversity. We take pride in it.

And some people hate that.

Reader Comments

226 Comments - Add Your Comment

Note: This page requires you to login with Facebook to comment.

Comment Policy

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: August 13th, 2012 1:51 PM

LB, Janet said she wasn't happy with Oak Park and diversity isn't real and doesn't want Black's in Oak Park and Black kids in the schools and the homes are expensive because she thinks White's think Black's can't afford them and it's just another way to keep Black's out. Well she may be right, but it didn't work because they got in anyway, and you know how the Black kid's are at the High School, so she may be right but what can the White's who don't like it do about it now? Nothing.


Posted: August 13th, 2012 1:44 PM

Furthermore Q, another poster, KMom mentioned that she thought the portrayals of interracial relationships in films such as Jungle Fever and on Jerry Springer are very one-sided. Then dumb Janet started screaming about something to the effect of "Is that the only black movie that should be at Lake Theater?" "Do I act like I belong on Jerry Springer?!" Those may not be her exact comments because I don't feel like scrolling down, but the comments were something to that effect.


Posted: August 13th, 2012 1:42 PM

Q, Janet was getting ridiculous and inflamed. She was too stupid to realize that people were starting to attack her not so much for her views, but for the comical and inarticulate way that she continued to present herself. People were getting a laugh at her expense. All Janet wanted to do was talk about how blacks are treated unfairly in Oak Park, but she was sadly perpetuating the stereotype that blacks are stupid with her comments. I'm black and I found her comments to be embarrassing.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: August 13th, 2012 1:01 PM

Phil of Ideas, that's a good idea to suggest pulling yourself up by the bootstraps, but some people don't even have bootstraps.

Q from Oak Park  

Posted: August 13th, 2012 1:00 PM

LB, this part makes you seem like an idiot. "not referring to Janet herself her as a "Jerry Springer guest"." Not really, and if you can accept that Janet may not have had the best education, but is trying very hard to improve that for her children, then you would have to agree Janet is making a very positive change so idiot would not be the correct word to use for Janet.


Posted: August 13th, 2012 3:31 AM

Why was everyone trying to reason with Janet and validate her points? Tell her the truth. No one took her seriously cause she sounds like an idiot. She wasn't even articulate. She attacked a woman over her relationship/life because she was too stupid to realize that the woman was making a reference to the portrayal of relationships in movies/shows, not referring to Janet herself her as a "Jerry Springer guest". Janet says she works with her kids at home on their education? God help them.

Phil of Ideas  

Posted: August 26th, 2011 12:18 PM

Bill, my Republic friend, I ask that you take personal responsibility for your property and purchase on the free market a security system to keep vandals away. You must know government cannot be trusted to do anything right. It appears from your posts that you are making yourself a victim rather than pulling yourself up by the bootstraps. Use hard work to clean your garage and paint a new poster. Self-reliance is the answer, not seeking handouts (even graciousness is a handout)from others.


Posted: August 26th, 2011 10:20 AM

John, since you were attacking my civility, I assumed you had read my posts. Silly me, to make such an assumption.

Bill from Oak Park  

Posted: August 26th, 2011 8:40 AM

Janet. Is everything through a filter of race? I don't know who defaced my garage or stole my sign. I assumed it is someone who exhibits the typical OP progressive elitism expressed in the article. Something on the order of "If you would quit watching Fox, you would see the weakness of your beliefs." I'm very comfortable with the underpinnings of my beliefs and wish authors like Hubbuch could make their point without the insults. Can't OP prgressives be gracious given their super majority?

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 25th, 2011 2:28 PM

When one of who sprayed your garage? A black person? Had nothing to do with that!!!And to answer your question, I don't treat Republicans any kind of way. God will handle you. I'd rather pray for people who try to bring other folks down and think less of them because of their race, rather than spray your garage. I don't give a damn if you're black ,white, green, polish whatever. I can befriend almost anybody, but to hell with whomever carry around hate and bad intentions for no damn reason

Bill from Oak Park  

Posted: August 25th, 2011 1:57 PM

Do you take pride in how you treat Republicans? As an 11 year resident, I always appreciate being told that my "narrow" opinions must come from watching Fox news. That's real deep! Thanks also for protecting me from my Bush sign in 2004. Also, I really liked it when one of you enlightened folks sprayed "cracker" on my garage. Hope it makes you feel good to attack those who have no political say at the local, county or congressional level. Words I'll never hear here, "My Republican friend."

janet from oak  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 11:12 PM

POC,I never said that police are the sole solution to the problem, however it would help. And to answer your question there are quite a bit of bad people in those neighborhoods. There's several things that can be done. Mayor daley could've done more than he did. Yeah he wanted to bring in more tourists to Chicago,but what's the point if they can only stay in one section?? Try cleaning up Chicago as a whole instead of in just spots.

Poc from Sherryville  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 10:08 PM

Janet, I'm not sure that Police are the answer to the problems of the neighborhood. How many really bad people are in those neighborhoods that ruin it for the rest? I really don't think a lot. So how do you think those neighborhoods should be cleaned up of drugs, violence and shootings? It just gives a negative look to people who can't figure it out.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 9:45 PM

Gee Jo, no one ever told me that I was expected to read all posts and track the source of the subject before commenting. So the fact is that I have not follow the thread between you and Epic. As an old, boring posters, I am good at spotting old, boring threads.


Posted: August 23rd, 2011 9:18 PM

@ john murtagh, before you declare yourself the mayor of, you might want to check your facts. Did you see the comment that mr. epic made that I was commenting on? I think that given his comment, mine was pretty darned civil.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 8:53 PM

@Janet- There are many organizations out there looking to close the achievement gap. If you take your concerns to them in a calm and precise manner, I'm sure you'll have no problems with being branded a trouble maker, as... their objectives are the same as/similar to your own. Change can't happen over night, and there is no magic wand to solve problems that start AT HOME. Even if CPS had all of the best teachers in the world... the achievement gap would still exist. Start with the parents. Make them aware of these organizations and stress their benefits. If certain organizations aren't operating in your community, try to bring them there.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 7:54 PM

I remember that movie being discussed on Oprah. I refuse to watch it though, because I will just get more upset than I already am. Even though my children aren't in CPS, I still feel bad for those who are. And I've tried to fight to change things, and in that process, I was standing alone. People turned their backs on me etc. When you try to become involved, you get pushed away for becoming too involved, and then considered a troublemaker. Until others join the battle it's just a lost cause.

jmo (was jo one time but made some1 really mad, sorry, they are my initials!)  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 7:41 PM

Please watch the documentary, "Waiting for Superman." It well explains our current educational climate.

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 6:39 PM

Janet, I think you just scanned my post. I said that when I went to school we got homework in 6th grade and I was implying that perhaps it is now much earlier that this occurs. Of course OP has a more advanced curriculum than CPS! But what I am trying to say is that even when Black students start in kindergarten with their White counterparts in OP schools, they still begin to fall behind by the third grade. Another poster made a great point: parents always have to be involved. End. of. story.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 6:14 PM

If the Mayor could have taken his focus off of sprucing up downtown Chicago, and focused a minute on what he could possibly do to better the other parts of Chicago,like Englewood, like the Roseland community, like the Austin area, that would have been a start. Get better teachers into those schools, let go off the bad cops instead of protecting them, and bring in the cops who will help get the crime and the drugs off of the street, instead of participating in it. Environment is crucial

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 5:55 PM

I was so upset and typing so fast that my last post was all screwed up. But what I was saying was that the environment can and does deter academic excellence. Why do you think parents try to relocate to the suburbs?? FOR A BETTER ENVIRONMENT, BETTER SCHOOLS etc. Now like I said you try focusing with thugs on the corner, scared to walk to and from school, gunshot ringing, schools with staff who come on to students, schools with not enough equipment,and with teachers who don't do all that they can

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 5:42 PM

And did you seriously ask me how the environment affects academic excellence. Chicago is far differenet than the suburbs. You tell me if you could concentrate on your studies, and focus if you or thugs are hanging on the were in a neighborhood where gun shots are ringing out, street, or in schools with not enough needed equipment, like books,etc. Try trying to focus in an environment that has teachers verbally and physically abuse students.SO YES, ENVIRONMENT PLAYS A PART TOO

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 5:33 PM

Well Violet you're free to feel however you choose to, but I stand behind what I said. I don't care if you were in 5 master's programs, I know for a fact that district 97's curriculum is more advanced than CPS, because I have dealt with CPS in the past. And Oak Park doesn't wait til the "6th" grade to give out real homework, that starts in the first and second. Don't know where you're from, but it's not the real world!

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 4:19 PM

I bring up ADD because I was briefly in a Master's program in Special Education. More Black children are SPED students than other ethnicities. But these days, SPED includes emotional/behavioral disorders, learning disabilities, and ADHD. So it's possible that ADD children are okay academically until they are graded on homework. Also, how does one's environment aid or deter academic excellence? If a kid is mocked for "acting White" by getting good grades, what does that say?

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 4:15 PM

Cont. So why is this? We certainly cannot say that Black children are being disenfranchised due to race. Is there a more uber-liberal town in the USA than OP? My theory: now at third grade, homework comes into play. When I was a kid it was more like 6th grade when we started having real homework. Until then I was at the top of my class and when I had to have self-discipline, I didn't do as well. ADD is a chief culprit in inability to use time wisely and be organized. Also, motivation and culture

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 4:11 PM

@Janet: The comment you made about Black kids coming over from CPS and not being up to speed with OP's curriculum is simply untrue (or at least not at the crux of the issue). I went to OP public schools from K-12. I saw firsthand the gap between Blacks and Whites. And I am in my 40s! Recently an article appeared on here about the gap between White and Black being seen here in the third grade. So from K-3, White and Black kids are on par academically and then something shifts. *TBC*

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 11:59 AM

Jo - Old and Bored? Maybe, but civil. Let's not get into Ageism. We already have too many "ism's" on the agenda.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 10:33 AM

@Janet- I was actually speaking in more general terms, and should have been more clear. Yes, the bad teachers need to be weeded out. However, these are also matters that need to be addressed by the parents as well as community organizations. You mentioned the victims of CPS, and this is why I mentioned APPLE. A lot of these issues exist because parents are not involved in their children's educations. At some point we do have to take personal responsibility. If you're concerned for black children in Oak Park in general, why not take your concerns to APPLE, regardless of whether your children need any assistance? You're saying there's a problem, why not see what's being done about it? If programs like APPLE exist, but the parents don't take advantage of them, who is at fault? Often times parents mistakenly believe that simply moving into a better area with better schools will solve all of their problems, when in some instances it can create a new set of problems. Some of my friends were involved with APPLE when I was at OPRF. I'm not sure what all they do, but I do believe it's more than tutoring.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 10:21 AM

When I speak about victims of CPS, I speak about the kids who are stuck there because they have no place to go. I was once in the Chicago Public School System, and I refused to put my children through any of that. Luckily for me, by the time I had children, I was able to put them in a school system that I believed to be great, until I realized that district 97, wasn't all that it was cracked up to be.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 10:04 AM

@JG Morales. I wasn't saying that my kids need tutoring. My children are doing just fine, very smart. I would have never just relied on the public school system to teach my children anything. I work with them at home as well. You have some teachers that don't care if your child understand's the lesson or not, because at the end of the day, they're still getting paid. You have teachers out there who think that they should spend more time on "other students",So I stay involved with their education


Posted: August 23rd, 2011 6:15 AM

And next time, epic (and I love your attempt to appear young and hip with your handle--you're probably old and bored like the rest of the posters here) read the comment you are citing. I didn't say I was a racist. I said if she thought I was a racist, there didn't seem to be anything I could do to disabuse her of the notion. It's very hard to unprove a negative.


Posted: August 23rd, 2011 6:12 AM

epic, maybe you could give perfect lessons, so the rest of us could learn from your example.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 2:43 AM

@Janet- Have you contacted APPLE? I'm not sure what all they do, but it seems to be the group out here to go to with such concerns. I do believe they offer tutoring, but I'm not sure of the details. There are also other groups designed to provide resources to first generation college students, but I'm not sure if they work with OPRF. Not all of this responsibility can or should rest on the school system. What you mentioned about the so-called victims of CPS is a very slippery slope. While there may indeed be victims, some in this village operate with the assumption that *most* minority students are victims. No need to perpetuate a stereotype. For the sake of numbers, some have discouraged minority students from taking honors courses, for instance. Numbers, not the learning of the students, being the main priority. Unfortunately, many parents will simply trust the recommendations of the deans with no real understanding of their children's past or present curriculum. OPRF lacked in the area of college prep. It was the outside classes and programs that better prepared a lot of people for college. However, this isn't the fault nor responsibility of whites at large. Anyone who makes generalizing comments in the spirit of Kanye West, regardless of their color, will more than likely be viewed as undereducated by educated individuals. Don't let your point be lost in the side show of blanketed and bigoted remarks. Had anyone said "The black people in Oak Park think...", said individual would certainly be called racist and ignorant (similar to what happened to poor Mr. Hubbuch). You'll have a hard time raising awareness among people if you choose to attack them at random.

epic lulz  

Posted: August 23rd, 2011 2:39 AM

"I guess it you think we're all racists, there isn't much I can do about it." Well, have you tried to stop being a racist? That would probably be a good place to start.

Good from Zuippa  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 9:45 PM

Mean Gene, I'm not really sure if having better ACT scores make a smarter person. We have lots of smart people running this Country, who did really well on the ACT's but have no idea what they are doing.

Mean Gene  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 9:14 PM

@ Good from Zuippa, that might be a prescription for a safer neighborhood. Not so much for improving ACT scores and increasing the likelihood that one is prepared for college. @ not simple, thanks! You just exemplified the real potential of these forums, spreading useful information and resources.

Re:Re:Reality Check  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 4:48 PM

Yes, I had doubts that my posting would be posted. Admittedly those feelings & doubts are residue from years ago. However, they were validated as a result of the lack of response or community disgust to the homecoming football game scheduling issue. Inclusion & diversity is not just a black - white issue. My posting inclusion indicates that the newspaper is perhaps more inclusive than in the past. I was heartened & surprised. Reading the other postings not so much.

Good from Zuippa   

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 2:35 PM

Mean Gene, "They're cleaner, nicer, and probably safer...and that's about it." Those are great qualities to have and make communities safe.

not simple  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 2:32 PM

@mean gene - You may want to contact the Illinois Network of Charters Schools to discuss your sister's concerns. There are a lot of good people there who can help find a good fit.

not simple  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 2:15 PM

@mean gene - Sorry your sister did not have a good experience. The beauty of the charter system is that you can leave and find a better charter school. I do come an informed background and yes, some charter schools do not deliver, however, most have very positive results. It's very easy to find good and bad examples but the bottom line is that something must be done to improve public education in our most impoverished neighborhoods. I believe charters are a step in the right direction.

Mean Gene  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 1:53 PM

Charter schools are helping black children in Chicago?!?!? My guess is you aren't Black...or in education...or talking to too many people that fit in both categories. My baby sister goes to one of those schools. Her grades are much better but I don't think she's anymore ready for college than when she left CPS. I'm surrounded by Black teachers in CPS and Black family and friends that attend charter schools. They're cleaner, nicer, and probably safer...and that's about it.

Making It from Oak Park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 11:54 AM

jo, is it possible that Janet can live elsewhere and still be on the board? She would be a good addition to make sure Black people got a fair deal in Oak Park.


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 11:48 AM

from the sounds of it, Janet is a former resident of OP.

Making It from Oak Park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 11:41 AM

Janet, you would be a perfect addition to the Village Board. Is there anyway you would consider running?

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 8:19 AM

And "not simple",I never said bad CPS education was a black or white issue. I clearly stated that no one ever gave a damn about CPS. The big guys were only looking out for themselves and not the kids. Would get in front of the media talking about what they were doing,when in reality wasn't doing anything but allowing the schools to go further into the toilet.I mean they actually put the futures of those kids in the hands of a man who ran buses and trains?That speaks for itself! Ron(joke)Huberman


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 8:17 AM

We agree there, Janet. I would have no problems whatsoever with the schools eliminating the "gifted" program. And yes, kids do bring their prejudices to school with them. Teachers have gotten better at dealing with some of it. And the prejudice isn't just black and white, it's all manner of stuff. Makes the head spin, but it does give you an opening as a parent to talk about it. I find it hits around grade three and dissipates around middle school, when kids stop listening to their parents. :-)

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 8:01 AM

Oh, and FYI, some of the white kids aren't as "gifted" as their parents want everyone to think,no matter how much money you donate to the school.But no one ever hears about that for some reason.Seems like white people are in the spotlight only when something good is being discussed, as to blacks only when something bad.It's no secret how some of the white parents feel,because their kids sometimes bring their racial remarks to school with them.You know the ones that were discussed over the dinner


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:59 AM

one more thing and then I have to go to work! AYP doesn't have anything to do with the curriculum. If I am understanding it correctly, AYP has to do with scores on the ISATs, the same test all public schooler take. OP schools might have relatively high scores on the ISATs, and those scores are supposed to rise per mandate of NCLB. But that has nothing to do with the school's curriculum, unless you count test prep, which everyone does, and there is more intense training for kids who need it.

not simple  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:58 AM

Charter schools are helping black children in Chicago but the NAACP opposes them because the schools are generally anti teachers' union. Bad CPS education is more than a black and white issue.


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:55 AM

AYP is an albatross imo (really, by year X EVERYONE is going to make AYP? Dream on, policy wonks), but everyone is trying to work with it. I think it's good that it shows who isn't making AYP so admins can know how and who to work with. I do agree with some of what you say, that saying "we're diverse!" isn't the same thing as getting along. But if you want to say this is a terribly intolerant place, I would gently suggest you might want to get out more. OP isn't perfect, but it's not intolerant


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:51 AM

janet, do you have any direct experience with d97 schools? They do lots and lots of work to make sure all kids excel, particularly those who are lost. An example is Irving school, the most diverse (sorry, I know you don't like that word) in the district. In one year of intense work, they pretty much eliminated any "achievement gap," at least for that year! I think they are fantastic. I think the district should follow their lead.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:43 AM

And lets go back to schools shall we. See, some of the blacks that attend OP schools, unfortunatley were victims of the Chicago Public School system. No one ever gave a damn about bettering CPS, So OP's curriculum, may be more advanced than Chicago. So district 97's curriculum, may be new to some of the kids. So instead of blaming the kids for your school's not meeting the yearly adequate progress, help them. Bring some of them up to speed. BUT common sense isn't common to everybody


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:38 AM

I guess it you think we're all racists, there isn't much I can do about it.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:17 AM

And as far as change goes, you can complain and strive for change until you pass out, but if the white people in oak park don't want change and think that things are perfect the way they are, then it's just a lost cause. In order to make a change, there has to be something that needs changing, so case and point, The racists in Oak Park, believes everything is fine, so there will be no changing of any kind, except probably to one day ban blacks completely! Not just from the movie screens!!!!!


Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:12 AM

Janet, some of what you are saying is compelling, but you lost me at "Their homes are so expensive, because it is another way to keep the blacks out because they assume that we can't afford to be in Oak Park." Really? This town can be silly, ibut they excel in following real estate law, sometimes to a maddening extent. If someone wants to buy my house, please do so. I didn't know who the person was who bought my last house, and I am really looking forward to not-meeting the next buyers!

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 7:08 AM

But since you guys are still talking about the movies, I'd bet that "the help" is playing at Lake, because that's how certain people like to see us, as maids. In the eyes of many, we're good enough to clean your house, take care of your kids because you don't want to, but that's about it. How about having black lawyers, doctors, etc in your films, instead of black criminals, and maids. And FYI, my point with oak park was stop it with the diversity B.S. already. Lying isn't a good look!

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 6:52 AM

It's funny how the truth is portrayed as a rant, and how someone("also aware of oak park")assumes I'm uneducated because I'm black, however I probably left the school system with better grades than you could have ever paid someone to give your kid. My education is fine, especially when it comes to identifying racists! Funny how everyone made this into solely a "lake movie theater" issue. Seems like someone else is guilty of not listening.

ReReality Check  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 12:55 AM

Reality Check, you already assumed you would not get your posting up, but you did. That must change a little in your thinking that things can change.

Reality Check  

Posted: August 22nd, 2011 12:25 AM

Please refer back to my post dated August 20, at 7:52. I'm not talking about projects. I'm talking about mindset and attitudes.......

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 10:58 PM

The essence of change is recognition of a problem. If there is no problem, there is no need for change. OP gov't sees no problems & no need for change. What they call change is the use of a historical,traditional and outdated plans to guide them. So they dismiss big problems and micro-manage the little ones. The strategy is OK in the short term but a disaster in the long term. We are already in the long term (21st Century) while our leadership is still wandering in the 20th Century.

ReReality Check  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 6:16 PM

Reality Check. If you want the opinion of the entire Village, send out a ballot on projects being proposed and take a vote. Don't rely on the few who show up and voice their dissatisfaction on the VOP 6 channel because each time the project in question had been moved forward.

Reality Check  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 4:56 PM

Change not only takes time, it also takes willingness. If the powers that be sense that honest change ON AN ISSUE is not what the COMMUNITY wants, it will go it has, NOWHERE.......

A Change You Can Believe In from Oak Park  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 4:35 PM

Change Takes Time, now you know it doesn't take time to make change when you are in the few who make the changes, and not for the majority. Now we need to start talking about getting people back to work. Ha Ha

Change Takes Time...But Not Much from OP  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 3:45 PM

@A Change: Well, change only takes enough time to lay down the wasteful bliuestone sidewalks, vote for developments that will never happen or will lower property values, ignore failing municipal infrastructure, sign off on a garage project that later is a debacle, build a multi-million dollar garage that's not needed 5 years later, mis-spend TIF district dollars....that's the change we see around us in OP. Can you believe in that? I still can hardly fathom it.

A Change You Can Believe In from Oak Park  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 12:57 PM

Jg Morales, changes don't take time if you are in the select group who makes them happen.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 21st, 2011 6:18 AM

Considering your reply was regarding my post to Glenn Beck regarding true OPers, I assumed you must. If you actually did push for change and it went no where, I'm sorry to hear about it. But, of course, changes usually don't happen over night.

Reality Check  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 11:43 PM

I don't care who is a "true" Oak Parker. Fighting for some changes go nowhere, so I did leave.......

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 7:58 PM

I didn't state that OP "values American values". I was using America as a nation for comparison. If you view something as intolerant you can move if you'd like, or you can push for change. If you love OP you'll fight for positive change. If not, you'll leave this place. If you're itching to leave, what do you care who is considered a "true" OPer and who is not?

Reality Check  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 7:52 PM

So, Oak Park is an all inclusive, liberal place which values "American values" What does that mean? Put your money where your mouth is. Tolerance also means not making decisions that do not honor other's lives, as in scheduling the high schools homecoming on a Jewish holiday!!!!? It was always and apparently is still thus...... I couldn't wait to move. It would be nice if this posting were allowed to actually be posted.....

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 7:35 PM

@Glenn Beck- I agree with your point about tolerance, but I think it's a thin line. Think of moving to America if you hate American values. How do you believe Americans would feel about immigrants who hate their values? Further, if you're anti-diversity, and *openly so*, in this nation, you're pretty much a bigot (and anti-Christ) by alleged American standards anyway. That's not unique to OP. I don't believe you have to love liberalism to be a "true" OPer, but I think you do have to love OP with that cheerleader enthusiasm, voicing your concerns for her even if they are unpopular. Compare the guy who hates American values to the American who seeks to improve what he sees wrong in his nation. People are similarly called anti-American for having unpopular views. Do they all flee to France leaving the country they love behind, because they're insulted by the opinions of others? Of course not.

Who Cares from Oak Park  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 12:31 PM

We are Oak Parkers, and it's not easy being one. Our goal as a group is letting our Village government spend whatever it takes to get a blurb in national media. When projects turn out to be wasteful, we quickly grab the words, progressive Village, and that takes money! We live off the reputation of others who once lived in Oak Park, like Ernest Hemingway, and Frank Lloyd Wright. Continue....

Who Cares from Oak Park  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 12:30 PM

We will associate others as Oak Parkers, if they become known, regardless if they just stopped in Oak Park to use the toilet because we know that they could have used the toilet anywhere, but they chose Oak Park, to do their business in. Yes, we will never measure up to the feats that previous Oak Parkers succeeded to, but by golly, we don't need to, we live here and are proud to live off the coat tails of others who happened to be from Oak Park. That is what a real Oak Parker is.

Glenn Beck Apparently from OP  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 10:48 AM

@Phil: btw -- I've been here 20 years, and I'll likely be here 20 more. But in retrospect, I would have chosen differently....and I recommend to others when asked that they think hard before moving into "The People's Republic of Oak Park." If that means I'm not a "true OPer", then so be it. But, perhaps you're thinking more about some misguided sense of high school team you shout "we are Oak Park" at rallies?

Glenn Beck Apparently from Oak Park  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 10:43 AM

@Phil: Playing the victim is an art form here in Oak Park. I'm merely saying that if one isn't quite as ultra-liberal as the prevailing hippie vibe, or asks any real questions, that they are likely to be branded "Glenn Beck." And, perhaps we should work on valuing diversity of thought as much as diversity of anything else. The "Oak Park: Love the Liberalism or Leave" mentality is tiring and non-productive. My desire to relocate is based on that -- I just wish we could focus on real issues.

Phil of Ideas  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 10:04 AM

Regardless of your politics, a 'true Oak Parker' doesn't want to leave. By definition. I am not sure I am one, but I dont wish to leave, so I can pass that low bar. Keep playin' the victim, though: it is very attractive.

Glenn Beck Apparently from OP  

Posted: August 20th, 2011 6:45 AM

Mr Hubbuch, you have taught me something -- the fact that I moved here because it's near the city, the schools are decent (and let's add because we can walk to a few decent shops and restaurants) means that I'm not a "true Oak Parker." So, until I buy in to all the diversity and uber-liberal hooey, I'll always be seen as Glenn Beck, and an outsider. No wonder I wish I could move...

OP Guy  

Posted: August 19th, 2011 9:29 PM

Yup, cause Jackie Chan is obviously the only Asian actor that makes movies.

Lake from Oak Park  

Posted: August 19th, 2011 5:16 PM

OP Guy, you are right. It has been awhile since Jackie Chan has made a movie.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 19th, 2011 4:19 PM

Chris, others, I hope your recognized the sarcasm in my post. Janet was complaining about not enough diversity, and then using the lack of AA films as an example... If one wants to "really" talk about diversity then one has to expand to a majority of ethnic groups, not just 2! Of course it's unreasonable to expect the Lake Theater to show all films from every country, but I'd bet the deed of my house on the fact the Lake shows more AA films than films with Asians...

Films from Oak Park  

Posted: August 19th, 2011 11:34 AM

There is a terrific amount of films being shown at the Gene Siskel Film Center, in Chicago. If you are interested in discovering many talented film makers, check out the films still available this month.

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 19th, 2011 11:21 AM

Correction: "Self-congratulatory" (I think!). Let's face facts: "they" are limiting events based upon who they are afraid will turn up. I have already mentioned "Midnight Madness" and how the last year it was held there were tons of people in the streets and apparently the powers-that-be got a bit nervous at the turnout and WHO turned out. It was such a fun event! I used to live at the epicenter of it and it was cool to just hang on the street and enjoy the action. Oh well, that librulism 4 ya!

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 19th, 2011 11:18 AM

I have seen Tyler Perry movies at the Lake, so that is a bit of a mystery to me. As for this oozing, self-congratulary-aren't-I-a-tolerant-White-person thing, it's pretty embarrassing if you ask me. And I was raised on this sort of nonsense. It took getting called an ethnic slur to snap me back into reality. Hey, I went back to school in my 30s and chose to ride the Austin bus to hook up with a NW side train I needed. RARELY if ever did I see a White person on that bus! Talk is cheap!


Posted: August 19th, 2011 12:24 AM

Probably more "black" movies in the west side or south side theaters.


Posted: August 19th, 2011 12:19 AM

Janet and others, every year Stan West (who writes articles for this paper form time to time) puts on the Oak Park Film Festival. It highlights African American film makers and shows at the Lake. As for the rest, the Lake theater's small and as a business I would say they are going to run films that bring in the most people. Nothing to do with a black/white issue as if you looked at other theater's you'd see the same stuff.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 18th, 2011 11:43 PM

I think I'm going to contact the Lake Theater and complain about the lack of Korean films. While I'm at it, I'm also going to complain about the lack of Thai films, and Austrian films...

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: August 17th, 2011 2:14 PM

Janet, I still think you should contact Willis Johnson regarding your concerns about the lack of "black films" being presented at the Lake Theater. You might also consider asking the Oak Park Library board to schedule a film festival promoting the works of African-American film makers.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 17th, 2011 1:39 PM

I'm confident. :)

AlsoAware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 17th, 2011 12:33 PM

Patricia O'Shea, you don't need to prove to others how you feel about others if you are confident in your own beliefs. If you aren't, then you can continue with what people use to say decades ago, to show they aren't a racist, and that's, My Best Friend Is Black. KMom, you can't blame Janet for her rantings. She didn't get a fair education of learning how to communicate.

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 17th, 2011 9:46 AM

Patricia, well said. A rant and personal attack based on one's own inability to read and comprehend a comment doesn't sit well with me either. Credibility kinda goes out the door at that point. Unless an acknowledgement and/or apology follows, I am usually pretty much done listening.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 17th, 2011 12:58 AM

Anonymous...I'm all for listening, but that is a two way street. I'm not interested in listening to someone who calls me a racist based on - well, nothing )or is it based on where I live?). That's kind of hypocritical no? Zero will be solved with Janet's attitude. I'd be cool with just a rant, but a rant plus baseless accusations...? Not so much.


Posted: August 17th, 2011 12:16 AM

I don't think you will get rid of identifying people by their race, because of something a Black guy in the Military told me. He basically said if you are Black, and a White guy robs you, you are going to say some White guy robbed me.

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 17th, 2011 12:14 AM

Anonymous, Janet just doesn't like White's in Oak Park, because they are against her. That is what she thinks. Nothing to learn about that. Oak Park does not regulate what films will be shown at the Lake Theater. Films are distributed to the theaters that are projected to do well at. I don't care if there is a lead actor who is White, Black, Latino, Asian, etc.. The acting needs to be good. Has nothing to do with race.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 11:19 PM

I wanted to stop posting but I feel Janet needs a little back up. So often when the angry black voice speaks, I hear excuses for why they are wrong. Why not listen? There is truth in what is communicated in a different style. It is a person who has a different perspective. Why not learn from it?

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 11:06 PM

Hey "Phil of Ideas", a splash of sarcasm huh? Gotta love it! Well I got some for you too, in the form of a question. Is trash what you take out, or what you see everytime you look in the mirror? And as for you Pat, You're right, I don't know anything about your belief system, but I'm entitled to my opinion, and my opinion is that your belief system is just like the rest of the predjudiced people of OP "NO N%&&@S ALLOWED!! HAVE A GOOD NIGHT!

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:51 PM

Well you're allowed to feel that way, however I don't feel that I'm being unfair. And,"black films" are films with black leading actors, not just that "token black that's thrown into the movie with a line or two. And somehow someone made this debate out to be just about Lake theater.It's not just about that. It's about Oak Park not being as diverse as they portray. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and mines is that Oak Park could do a better job at making us feel more welcome!

rubber glue  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:45 PM

"At a time when we are far too eager to lay the blame for all that ails the world at the feet of those who think differently than we do," the president said, "it's important for us to pause for a moment and make sure that we are talking with each other in a way that heals, not a way that wounds." - President Obama - the first 1/2 white 1/2 black president of the United States.

Phil of Ideas  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:37 PM

Janet is right about one thing; trash is trash.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:24 PM

Janet, I think you are being unfair to the Lake Theater. What are the "black films" that you claim are not being shown locally. "Precious" was at the Lake for many weeks. There is a scarcity of work being produced by African-American film makers but that seems more of a problem with the studios. Have you discussed your concerns with Willis Johnson? I've communicated with Classic Cinemas in the past and have always received a prompt response.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:21 PM

I Don't have a racist bone in my body. What I meant by that statement is that, don't allow nicole Kidman onto the Lake movie screen, but refuse, to show Tyler Perry, because you feel that black people can't conduct themselves in a civil manner. You wanna see people acting in a not so civil manner, check out downtown oak park especially on the weekend and I guarantee you that your race will be somewhere in that mix.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:10 PM

Again you are putting words into people's mouths. I'm pretty sure you know nothing about my belief system.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 10:03 PM

Actually I am reading very well Patricia, and so is my comprehension. Not all blacks are illiterate like you and district 97 believe us to be. And I don't need a translator for JG. I said what I said, and feel the way that I feel, and your approval isn't required. for me to do so! Black films aren't brought to Lake because they do not want us there. They fear we will bring their theater down. The problem isn't with Hollywood, or anyone else, it's Oak Park. It's not an opinion,it's a fact.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:57 PM

Nothing I stated in anyway implied that blacks (nor any other minorities) were the only or even main cause of crime in OP. Sorry to break it to you, but you're trying unsuccessfully to pin your obvious racial hangups on me. I'm not the one, deary. The, um, one drop rule effectively prevents me from being white. ;-) My point was that direct racial discrimination isn't the larger issue in the community as a whole. Typically, this "wrong element" isn't only unsavory because of some fear of crime. I was addressing Mr. Murtagh's question, and not regarding blacks specifically. Further, I wasn't expressing my personal view of any groups of people, but rather my perspective of the general vibe in OP. Yet, I can't help but wonder how you can scream about discrimination and a lack of diversity only to turn around and state that "only white viewers" would be interested in certain types of movies. You can't walk through life with your own racial bias, and expect not to find it looking right back at you.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:49 PM

That's what Jg said Janet -that he/she said it's about class...income levels...not color. Are you reading what people are writing? I think you have some points, but from many of your responses you seem unable to hear because of YOUR pre-conceptions. Regardless...really interesting conversation.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:44 PM

No "irony" would be the statement that you made calling blacks the "wrong element". The "wrong element" may be your son or daugter whom you think can do no wrong, but probably does it very well once they walk out of your front door. Now he hehehe to that!

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:27 PM

And as for Oak Park being afraid of attracting the "wrong element", the "wrong element" doesn't just exist in the black race. When I would look out of my window and see a bunch of teens disturbing the piece, I didn't just see black faces. Rapes, murders, robberies, etc, I'm sorry to break it to you, but whites play a part in those as well. So in spite of what you, and many others may believe, just because you're white, don't mean you're always right!

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:19 PM

"will only attract white viewers"??? heh heheh... Talk about irony. =-p

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:03 PM

I'm not saying that there should necessarily be a theater for just black oriented movies. What I'm saying is that Oak Park pretends to be so "diverse". So my thing is, don't just say it because it sounds good. If diversity is really the goal, don't just bring movies to the theater that you know will only attract white viewers. Bring something for everbody, foreign films, black films, etc. If I live 3 minutes away from Lake theater, I shouldn't have to go to the other side of town to see a movie!

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 8:04 PM

@Mr. Murtagh- I honestly believe it would be met with opposition if it would attract the "wrong element". If you're not familiar with Afriware, it's quite popular around the city. Even though they've been in Oak Park for years, I never heard of it till friends/associates commented that they would go there for book or poetry readings etc. To the best of my knowledge, those Afrocentric it may be, it has never attracted the "wrong" types of people, and thus doesn't seem to have met with opposition. "Class" not race seems to be the larger issue. If it is true that the Lake is bypassing movies by Tyler Perry, for instance, I'm inclined to believe it's for the same reason. Not because people of color would come to OP, but because the *wrong* people of color would come to OP. However, that's merely my perspective.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 5:24 PM

What would be the attitude of Oak Parkers if a theater in OP opened that showed only black oriented movies? What about Hispanic movies in Spanish? Would it be met with the sense of acceptance that OP prides or opposition on the grounds of segregation? Or something other than the two cited.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 5:17 PM

JOHN H. In Letter 12(Distress of a Frontier Man, his last, de Crevecoeur states "Must I then, in order to be called a faithful subject, coolly, and philosophically say, it is necessary for the good of Britain,...?" de Crevecoeur was conflicted in his allegiance between his old and new country. OP as a community can claim certain values that make it different than others. That does not mean that all residents must pledge allegiance to the values.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 4:11 PM

@Aware, "not to sound racist?" Really? You sound quite racist to me.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 4:06 PM

And "Aware Of Oak Park,it sound as if you're saying that I should'nt have anything to say because it's not as bad as the south or west side of Chicago. If so, that was very ignorant. I know about the differnt parts of the Chicago area, and no area should be allowed to treat people any kind of way because of their skin color. Hating someone because of their race is equivalant to going on the west and south side of chicago being gunned down. Because when you can take someone's life, that's hate

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 4:04 PM

Calm down Janet, go back and read my response closer. The Jungle Fever and Jerry Springer references were about how interracial couples are portrayed in the media/movies. Nothing more than that.

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 4:04 PM

Janet, you know the saying, Once you had Black, you never go back. She's pointing out that the White man shows only show stuff about some Black woman trying to figure out who the babies father is, and it just makes Whites' think that Blacks' can't have a one on one married relationship. It's just another example of how the Black race gets exploited. You know all of those programs just sterotype Black people, and it's no better than it once 30 years ago.

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 4:01 PM

Sorry to blow your racist theory about Asians and Hispanics staying in their own races, "Aware", but my youngest/adopted son is half Asian and half Black. Besides, haven't you ever seen any Spike Lee movies? Sheesh.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:58 PM

First of all KMOM,why do I have to be speaking in terms of jungle fever and jerry springer? Are you saying that those are the only kind of things black people watch? Yeah put your foot in your mouth. And perhaps you haven't been mistreated for being black because you're not black! Just because you married a black man for your own personal reasons don't make you black.

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:54 PM

Thank you, Lemon12. I didn't get all of the opportunities that others did so I didn't know that, but just explain it and I can be just as good at it.

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:52 PM

KMom, of course you are White. Not to sound racist, but Asian's and Hispanics stay in their own race. You are right about Black's and sports. That's a good example that Black's are better than other races, and if we could score on athletic abilities over books, Black's would get ahead in a White man's world.

Lemon12 (finally)  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:51 PM

Don't be a victim, stick up for your beliefs and don't worry about what your opponents say. If your ideas are powerful, and are expressed intelligently, wise people will agree and ignore your opponents. (Also, dont use the possessive apostrophe when you wish to indicate the plural. That wish is for Aware for Oak Park.)

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:51 PM

Janet from Oak Park's comment regarding the Lake Theater not showing black films raises an interesting question. Who are the black filmmakers of today? Tyler Perry has certainly been successful and Martin Lawerence has had a strong run with the "Big Momma's series. Spike Lee has produced a number of outstanding films and there have been a few independent pictures made by and starring African-Americans. But it's really been slim pickins. The real problem lies inside the Hollywood studios.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:49 PM

Interesting, Chet21. I don't care (really) but you give me a nickname, which is a weird power play displaying a lack of respect. Sure, non-conservatives have stooped to name call, but I always thought conservatives pride themselves on their toughness (sticks and stones and all that) and have criticized the Left for creating a society of victimization. That is why the pity party about being insulted is so confusing to me.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:36 PM

@Merriweather- I don't think he was judging all who leave. I think he has a bone to pick with those who leave because of racial intolerance. I think he's taken that position because a lot of intolerance has been posted on this website. As well, it's possible he can also draw such conclusions from people he personally knows or has spoken to. I think maybe he's calling some of them hypocrites... not because of where they go, but because of "white flight". I don't think he's throwing out a blanketed or baseless accusation. He seemed to clearly differentiate between those who leave because of taxes, etc and the rest. I believe this is based on something he observed, and directed towards whomever it applies. Who knows. Maybe I'm just reading too much into his words. But the truth is... I didn't write them. So, you kinda sorta have to take up any issues with him.

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:35 PM

When did I ever say I was White? I said I was in an interracial relationship and my husband is black. There are lots of types of interracial relationships. I am just sayin'. I could be Hispanic and be double whammy'd for all you know. But, alas, you are right. I am white. And my kids are "brown with part of the white" as they like to say sometimes. (p.s., when you said blacks can't score like asians my mind immediately went to sports and I didn't get it at all, I get it now though).

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:27 PM

Oak Park set up a system for people who were afraid of home's losing their value because of Black's moving in. I don't think they ever had to pay anyone. Homes have increased.

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:24 PM

Janet & Kmom, both of you have valid points. Janet experienced more racism because she is Black and you're White. White people think Black's tip less, because people who depend on tips say so. Black's appear to commit more crime because the media is owned by White's. White's question why Black's can't score like Asian's, and blame the Black's, not the teacher's. Janet, take a walk through the Austin neighborhood, Westside, or Southside, and enjoy a different type of racism.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 3:17 PM

@Lemonhead. You've NEVER witnessed or exhibited ANY animosity toward OP residents with a "conservative" perspective? Never? I'll make a suggestion - start reading the WJ posts and letters in the paper. While you're at it, go thru a couple of Ken Trainer columns. If that doesn't satisfy you, well, while I acknowledge that I could use some "professional" help (for numerous reasons!), perhaps you'd care to join me? Or visit an optometrist or have your ears checked? Thanks for the humor!

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:59 PM

We are just a near suburb with good transportation that votes Democratic south of Lake street - mostly ;)

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:56 PM

Janet, I didn't say your experiences were unreal, just that I had not experienced them myself. But our 20 years together as an interracial couple has not been without incidents of intolerance, racism and hate. Just haven't felt it as much in OP the last 12 years, although I am not naive and I am sure there are some who dissaprove/do not like us for racial reasons (and maybe others!). Wanna talk about being misrepresented, movies like Jungle Fever and shows like Jerry Springer sure don't help!

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:50 PM

KMOM, It's not just about a theater, but maybe you like the films that are being shown there, but as for MY HUSBAND AND I, we would like to see some films with characters that look like us as well. And yes the grass in greener where I reside now. And just because you have yet to experience what I have, doesn't make my experiences unreal. Just do a survey, if you'll indeed see just what I'm talking about. Oh and a little message to Oak Park, crime comes in all colors, NOT JUST BLACK!!!!

John Hubbuch from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:48 PM

De Crevecoeur in his Letter #3 in his Letters From An American Farmer tried to define what is an American. He concluded that the immigrants from England shared a certain history and values, and were almost a breed apart, a New Man if you will. Do those who live in Oak Park share certain values like De Crevecoeur's American that somehow make this community different from most others? Or are we just a near suburb with good transportation that votes Democratic?

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:30 PM

My OP experience has been far different from Janet's. Someone sold my family a house here 12 years ago, and was more than HAPPY to make the sale. My black children frequent the Lake Theatre, and so does my black husband, quite often! Oh, and my black children attend District 97, and we are very pleased with our experience. Janet, curious about where you moved to after leaving OP? And is the grass greener for you? Sorry your experience here was not good.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:30 PM

In the restaurant, they'd rather lay your change on the counter than to touch your hand, you call and try to rent out an apartment or house and they tell you that it's no longer for rent, but have your friend who happens to be white call a few hours later, and it happens to be back on the market. They complain about the young black teens having their pants hanging, but forget to complain about how their daughters walk down the streets in shorts short, short enough to see their butt cheeks??

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:22 PM

Oak Park movie theater rarely even have a black film showing there, the public schools sends home letters blaming the black kids for their school not meeting it's yealy adequate progress, they send investigators to your home if they believe that your income wouldn't allow you to actually afford to live in Oak Park, the district is very disrespectful. District 97 is rude, disrespectful, and will find every way in the book to keep the black child out.

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:13 PM

Well "HUH", Idon't tell me who my beef is w ith, you're the one who makes no sense. You can't tell me that what I'm saying isn't so because I have experienced it. They care who they sell the house to because they don't want the black in them, they prefer the whites.And as far as the schools, If you were a black parent with children within district 97, you wouldn't need me to give you any details, because you would have them!!!


Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:13 PM

I actually thought this was brilliant satire at first. Wow, I love Oak Park, but I'm sort of depressed after reading this.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:08 PM

...makes NO sense...

Ken from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 2:07 PM

@ still stunned: the theater raised prices to keep blacks out? That's quite an accusation and it makes sense. Are you suggesting that black people can't or won't come up with $6 or $8 for a movie (though attendance figures nationwide would indicate otherwise)? Janet's comments seem wildly unfounded and illogical, particularly regarding housing costs. Home prices are somehow artificially inflated to keep black people out? ...Huh? indeed.

still stunned  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 1:51 PM

Huh? Janet is correct. The theatre used to be $1.50 and that was changed. The achievement gap is too complex to get into here, but some black people move away after they experience D97. Model for multiculturalism? LOL whatever, I think the point is that OP should stop claiming to be so superior like it's the only place that is multiracial. The diversity thing is just a spin on tolerating black people.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 1:14 PM

Chet21, do you believe sarcastically calling liberals "diverse and tolerant" is insulting, or just painting with a broad brush? I think you need to check your skin, as it appears it is not as thick as you would prefer to think. I hope you can get help with your feelings of persecution.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 1:09 PM

Janet, it may be the "People's Republic," but OP doesnt program the movie theatre, it is owned by a private company. Your beef is with them. Housing prices kept up to keep blacks out? That makes no sense. Why does a seller care who they sell to if they have the money? They are leaving. Schools dont want black children? Details (aka support) for that position please.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 1:05 PM

Multiculturalism is not just another buzz term for integration. It is a process that encourages interaction between people of different races, cultures, and backgrounds. It brings people together. In OP, D97 is the model for how Multiculturalism works.

Enuf is Enuf from Oak Park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:21 AM

My primary concern is that Mr. Hubbuch's remarks are indicative of local media and leadership. Other commenters immediately criticized Mr. Hubbuch for his remarks, who simply responded; "I must say that the comments when read in their entirety more or less provide support the central thesis of the column." (August 14th, 7:53AM). This is the blind spot that I referenced earlier, which not only fails to recognize the flaw in one's viewpoint, but lacks the capacity for self-corr

janet from oak park  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 9:09 AM

Living in Oak Park was sickening. They pretend to be so diverse, but in reality, they can't stand the fact that blacks are even in the town. They don't want our black children in their schools,they don't want the movies that we may be the slightest bit interested in, in their movie theater. Their homes are so expensive, because it is another way to keep the blacks out because they assume that we can't afford to be in Oak Park.


Posted: August 16th, 2011 8:37 AM

@Jg Morales. As a former Oak Parker, trust me the "shot" against those who choose to leave was well noted. I'm so glad Oak Parkers have so much moral fiber, just because of where they live, that they can feel free to judge everyone else. Did we move to another suburb because it was "aryan?" No we left OP because of, you guessed it, the taxes, crime and the lower home prices. Oh, and the classism problem that no one in OP wants to admit exists. How racist of us...

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 16th, 2011 7:10 AM

We should take care, Token Black Guy, not to assume that our own views are typical of the racial or ethnic group of which we are a part. I am glad you are not offended. But some of us do recognize that we may harbor sub-conscious biases, and we think it beneficial to occasionally engage in self-examination in that regard. I am not offended by Hubbuch's words, but think they do reflect a sub-conscious bias that he ought to acknowledge.

Token Black Guy  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 11:26 PM

Despite my handle, I seriouly was not offended by what John said...and I didn't read it the way yall are interpreting it. Either I don't know the real John or you guys are super anal...or both. It's weird when the non-Black folks are offended and the Black guy is like "Huh?". Guess I'm losing my token status now.

Aware from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 5:57 PM

John Murtagh Multiculturism in OP, means a multitude of cultures living in OP. Nothing special about Oak Park with that. Our Country is Multicultural. What keeps diversity of Multicultures further apart than in Oak Park, is a variety of reasons, including income. So to close that gap, OP is lowering the price of moving in OP, giving people who are homeless and need a place to live, or people who live in bad neighborhoods. OP should do a study on why neighborhoods go from good to bad.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 4:28 PM

I suspect that John is not taking offense and probably feels a bit elated. This subject has probably garnered the best quality posts ever or at least a long time. John always tries to stir the pot and he sure did it this time,

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 4:16 PM

Like the focus on Multi-culturism rather than Diversity. Multiculturism is assertive, while Diversity has become passive. Perhaps it is time to consider a Village Statement on what is meant by Multiculturism in OP.

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 3:10 PM

@Jg Morales, nicely put and agree with and appreicate most of what you say. Personally though, I don't think in the context it was written that "our children" can be taken any other way. But the horse is beaten dead on my end, so I digress. Anyway, I liked what you had to say mostly. :)

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 3:06 PM

@Face in the Crowd...not "mad" any anyone here, but still offended at the poor (ignorant) choice of words.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 2:57 PM

I don't know. Going by the overall tone of the article, I think "our children" could be taken either way. It seemed to me that this was a shot at those who leave in search of more... aryan communities lol. It just doesn't read as an article written to everyone. I noticed the "our children" when I initially read this too, but I'll give Mr. Hubbuch the benefit of the doubt on this one... and ask that he give Groupons the benefit of the doubt as well. =-p I don't disagree with those who have noted OPers seeming to claim more diversity than they practice. I agree that we could do with a few more people who have a more enlightened understanding of true integration. However, as mentioned by KMom, there are plenty here who do walk the walk... enough to make this an attractive community for us. Maybe the claim to "diversity", which requires difference and a degree of segregation to exist, is the problem. Maybe integration is what we should strive towards.

Face in the Crowd  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 2:39 PM

@KMom - Your input is refreshing to this discussion, thank you. While it's OK to be mad at Hubbach, I don't think he meant to offend anyone. It has never made any sense to me why someone who is part white and part anything else is considered the "other" race. We only need to look as far as President Obama for a prime example.

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 1:53 PM

Another interesting snippet that made me giggle just a little..."I dare say many of us moved here in part because it made us feel good that we not only talked integration, we walked it." I couldn't help but think...yeah, I talked it, walked it, married it and gave birth to it! We didn't choose OP to "feel good" about living in a diverse community, we moved here as a multi-cultural family wanting/needing to connect and integrate with other like-minded people and families. There are many like us.

Enuf is Enuf from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 1:37 PM

The OP Diversity Statement, as per Mr. Hubbuch (rev. in parenthesis); "The people of OP choose this community, not just as a place to live, but as a way of life. OP has committed itself to equality not only because it is legal, but because it is right; not only because equality is ethical, but because it is desirable for us and our children (to be educated in a place where African-American children are physically in our classrooms rather than just in a book in those classrooms)."

KMom from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 1:00 PM

Wow. "our children" in classrooms with (Gasp!) "african-american" children?! How lucky "our" kids are to have that exposure. Hubbach, you are right-on target with this one! (NOT). I am so offended by this article. Moreso, I wonder where my family fits in?? My kids (like many, many children in the district) are bi-racial. Hey Hubbach, how lucky are those OP children you reference ("our" children) to be in classrooms with the "bi-racial" kids. Best of both worlds! Again, what an ignorant article.


Posted: August 15th, 2011 12:57 PM

@Decimus. I write that 20% of OP voters didn't vote for Obama and you think that you zing me by pointing out that it was "only" 16%?!? FWIW, Brady received 21% of OP votes. Kirk received 22%. Can we therefore agree that there are a significant number of R's in OP - around 20%? Why then do so many "diverse & tolerant" OP liberals delight in insulting them at every chance? I have thick skin, but it does prevent people from moving here AND encourages others to leave. That's good for prop values?


Posted: August 15th, 2011 12:45 PM

How many of the "OP is great!" posters have kids in the OP schools? My kids are now 17 and 20, but during their Irving/Julian/OPRF years I could count their total AfAm friends on one hand. Lunchroom at OPRF and Julian? It ain't integrated! Noticed how wide the achievement gap is in D97 and OPRF? So, Mr. H acknowledges few (if any) AfAm friends and I'm pointing out the huge racial gap of OP children in the schools. But, hey, the OP libs can feel proud and call OP's non-libs racists and bigots!

Epic Putz  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 11:44 AM

This column and its comments epitomize the pretentiousness, elitism, self-righteousness, self-satisfied posturing, hypocrisy and white liberal racism ("Look how diverse and tolerant 'we' are, there are black kids in 'our' kids' classes! This does not happen anywhere else but Oak Park!") found at the core of many in this village. Quite the indictment.

Enuf is Enuf from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 9:19 AM

@JohnHubbuch: the blind spot in your perspective on diversity is that you have differentiated the collective "we" of Oak Park. In referencing "our children" being separate from "African-American children", you have revealed an "us / them" segregated viewpoint, which is the antithesis of the very diversity you claim. In my experience, this blind spot on diversity is all too apparent and common, and has served to polarize issues rather than providing meaning

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 7:39 AM

I don't think that's the criticism John. I am certain that your background gives you a relatively broad perspective. The criticism is that your choice of words implied that the "we" of the article is white people, and black people still "them." That doesn't make you "intolerant" or bigoted. But we can all benefit from some introspection from time-to-time. It reminds us that, while OP may be ahead of most communities, it has not fully achieved the objectives of diversity.

John Hubbuch from Oak Park  

Posted: August 15th, 2011 7:16 AM

To the charge that my perspective on these weighty matters is limited/shaped by my personal history of having lived here 35 years,bought 4 houses,sent three children through 97 and 200,served on District 97's Board and was the high school's Booster Club President for 10 years, I must plead guilty, and ask for mercy from the court of public opinion. I would humbly request that my punishment be determined by those who have not signed up for Facebook,Twitter or Groupon.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 11:20 PM

OP from OP, which part of Austin are you talking about? If you're talking bout the blighted war zones, then I think the answer is pretty obvious. If you're talking about Galewood, maybe it's the diversity of house style that attracts to OP, maybe because it's closer to the amenities in downtown OP, maybe because it has the cta, maybe some people just like the "vibe" of the place better...

Oak Park from Oak Park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 9:01 PM

Decimus, what are the other reasons why they are not choosing the Austin neighborhood?


Posted: August 14th, 2011 8:42 PM

@Chet21--don't break your arm patting yourself on the back, there were only 15.74% who did not vote for President Obama, not 20%. @CheckToChet21-one reason OPers may not have chosen Austin High could be because it closed in 2007 (there are now 3 technical schools operating out of the former AHS facility). Kind of obliterates the relevance of your suggestion.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 6:46 PM

I think it has more to do with how you view Oak Park and your relationship with it than the length of time. Maybe also how it compares to other places in your personal experience. I've met proud Oak Parkers who had only been here for 5 years or less. I've also known lifers who couldn't wait to run as soon as they graduated, never to return. What's so special about this place is different for everyone. Similarly, people have their own reasons for hating it here.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 6:06 PM

Jg, great observation, couldn't agree with you more. Of course there is a bit of unsolicited "I've lived here all my life" and "my family has lived here forever." Sometimes I think they are tickling the newbie (ten years), but most of the time I recognized they are expressing their pride. Maybe there is an angle for John H here. Does the special OP feeling vary by years in the community? OP has had a pretty high population turnover in the last couple of decades.

Jg Morales  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 5:31 PM

Maybe most others can't identify with this, but there is something very special about Oak Park to me. Despite any issues we may have with "diversity", race isn't such a huge deal here. Even if only a small % of the population, there are lots of people who are half this and half something else in OP. It's not weird, it's not unusual, and we're almost never asked to self-identify in Oak Park. In other cities, states, and countries, it's always a question. I'm not saying there are no other places in the world like this, but it's one of the more subtle charms that I do enjoy.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 4:15 PM

Well said, Enuf! We are, after all, products of our environments, and John is as good a product of his as they come. John, still looking in the mirror... I think I spot a hair I missed from this mornings shave. Best wishes, Guy

Enuf is Enuf from Oak Park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 3:49 PM

... the underlying hypocrisy of his ethos.

Enuf is Enuf from Oak Park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 3:48 PM

What Hubbuch unwittingly revealed is how local media and leadership perceives OP. His view of a righteous OP empowers his self-perception as being 'special', one based in the context of 'better than thou' arrogance. He comforts himself from the armchair perspective of the majority race w/ statistics-based diversity, not w/ the reality of black-white grade gaps or social segregation. His viewpoint on "our children" vs "African-American children" betrays the

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 1:03 PM

1of 2 - Hi John - A couple of years ago I made a statement in front of a village board member that gave him apoplexy. The statement was the OP is becoming polarized. I think that the polarization has grown since. I think the polarization is paramount to your mission to uncover "whether or not there is something "special about being an Oak Parker." I suspect that 35, 25, and 10 years ago there was a sense of "special" that is vastly different than what might be consid

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 12:56 PM

2 of 2 - The newer, younger residents have a strong love and allegiance to OP, but it is not based on the historical political, social and cultural traditions. They see rigidity while the more traditional residents see stability. The challenge now is to create a more inclusive definition of what is special about being an Oak Parker.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 12:26 PM

Dan - I am not saying it is a good or a bad thing. I just found it interesting. There is a diversity issue involved. In 2000-2001, diversity was a major theme of a study conducted in the village. One of the recommendations was that diversity needed to be a village-wide initiative involving all taxing bodies. The effort to bring the taxing bodies together was a failure, but assertive diversity programs were formed in the school districts. Are your selections a reflection? Maybe.

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 9:30 AM

@John Hubbuch. Yes, the comments do demonstrate that some people in (and out of) OP hate the fact many Oak Parkers are proud of our aspirations to diversity. But, as I said below, these comment threads should not be taken as typical or reprsentative of the attitudes of OP residents. That said, we should not be complacent (or "smug")about the issue of diversity in our town. There are still obstacles to overcome in terms of personal attitudes and social integration.

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 9:21 AM

So John Murtagh, sounds as though you think it is a good thing that 4 of the 5 persons that came to my mind are involved in education.

John Hubbuch from Oak Park  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 7:53 AM

I just got back from vacation. My thanks to all for commenting. Without being adverserial, I must say that the comments when read in their entirety more or less provide support the central thesis of the column. My real interest in all of this is to discern whether or not there is something "special" about being an Oak Parker. As a resident for 35 years at one time I would have thought so. Now I'm not so sure. But it is interesting to contemplate.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 14th, 2011 2:28 AM

Hey John, I guess you missed the sarcasm. Thanks for the pop-psychology, I'll be sure to take a good long look in the mirror! Oh, and the name IS "Guy", since you asked so nicely.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 10:27 PM

Hey OP - re passive aggressive - Does the description below describe the behavior? "Ambiguity or speaking cryptically: a means of creating a feeling of insecurity in others or of disguising one's own insecurities." If yes, why not use your own name, and maybe you should look in a mirror.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 9:22 PM

Ah, so there are a least 2 Chets out there that are a part of the anti-OP rally... Well, people in OP ARE accepting of people with differing opinions, the difference being they voice their opinion compared to some that cowardly hide their opinions and release their feelings in passive aggressive ways. At least Oak Parks (some) openly stand for something, which is more than some can say.


Posted: August 13th, 2011 7:21 PM

@OP Guy. No idea what "City Data" is and I don't recall commenting under "Chet21" elsewhere. I don't think that I have "a chip....about Oak Park" but I am addressing Mr. H's comments in his 7th paragraph AND how many OP residents are intolerant of opinions that differ from their own - and how they express it. 20% of OP voters did not vote for Obama. Think about that. Where would OP be if those voters chose to live elsewhere? Prop values? Do you NOT want diversity of opinion in OP? I do wonder.

OP Guy  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 4:23 PM

Chet21, you wouldn't happen to be the same Chet from the City Data web-site that constantly complains about Oak Park will rallying for every other suburb, would you? As other's have mentioned, there are plenty of reasons for people who'd rather live in OP as oppose to Austin/Galewood. You seem to have a chip on your shoulder about Oak Park, maybe it's just misplaced rage, I don't know, but comparing Galewood to Oak Park is like comparing apple to oranges.

Check To Chet21 from Oak Park  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 3:40 PM

Chet21, very good observation. Why doesn't Oak Parker's choose to live in Austin, and send their kids to Austin High School? There is a lot more work that needs to be done to improve housing and the economic situation then there is in Oak Park. Does anyone know why people choice Oak Park versus's Austin neighborhood? I'm sure it has nothing to do with a few bad people who live in the Austin neighborhood.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 2:38 PM

Jo - Does being involved with the schools make one less prominent? Absolutely Not, but the public focus in every city or village I have lived in has been on the city officials. More residents vote in elections of school board members, the issues discussed in campaigns are clearer and more cogent. The duties are very similar, but the responsibilities are vastly different. For one, the school districts are custodians of a lot more of the resident's tax dollar than the village government.


Posted: August 13th, 2011 10:28 AM

Brian, you've touched on a subject which I've long pondered. I think I understand why "liberals" like John Hubbuch would have raised his boys in OP - not Austin/Galewood - and still pat themselves on the back and "take pride in" living here. But what I do NOT understand is how other "liberals," like Mr. lulz, call OP "rightwingers" "racists" and "bigots" - while, gosh, wondering how they rationalize/justify their NOT living in Austin? Hypocrite? Fear? OP liberals, keep "praising" yourselves!

Brian Slowiak from Oak Park  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 9:34 AM

The article fails to mention that Oak Parkers chose to violate the Civil Rights of every resident by passing an unconstitutional handgun ban and a ban on home for sale signs. Steve Linscott served time in prison for reporting a murder he did not commit to the OPPD.Police and fire fighters to live in town while teachers did not. No one from Oak Park urban pioneers in the Austin area to send their kids to black schools. Anyone want to buy income property in the Austin area?I

the racism is stunning from formerly Oak Park  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 9:11 AM

"uplifting to choose to educate our children in a place where African-American children are physically in our classrooms" I'm relieved that a few others noted this offensive comment, it shows how the "good schools" aren't so good for every child. We had to move to where OUR kids were seen as individuals and educated rather than counted as bonus points for 'liberal' white families. Go beyond "diversity" How about some EQUITY and giving up the model of systemic control.


Posted: August 13th, 2011 6:10 AM

I am confused. Does being involved with the schools make one less prominent?

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 13th, 2011 12:30 AM

Good choices, Dan. Make a note, 4 of 5 are from the school districts.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 11:53 PM

Glen Brewer

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 11:50 PM

OK, I play along Murtagh: Nathan Rouse, John Allen, Ralph Lee, Glenn Brewer, Jacques Consway. D

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 9:11 PM

No replies received from my question below. I have no idea what that means so don't write anything into my raising the question in the first place. Quiz Time - Name a prominent African American in Oak Park? TOP OF YOUR HEAD - NO GOOGLING! N

adele from op  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 7:14 PM

Epic admits to being intolerant (of the intolerant ), biggoted (toward the biggotted. and racist (against the racist). So, he/she will react in the same narrow minded manner based on his/her interpretations of the context.

john murtagh from oak park  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 7:04 PM

Quiz Time - Name a prominent African American in Oak Park? TOP OF YOUR HEAD - NO GOOGLING!

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 5:21 PM

My point is that I just a little skin crawling action going when I read White people touting their wonderful tolerance in living next to "African-Americans." That's mighty White of you! But the sad truth is that living in proximity to someone doesn't mean you embrace them as a meaningful part of your life. Even kids who share the same classroom may never cross paths outside the schoolyard.

Violet Aura  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 5:18 PM

"Diversity?" Yeah right, on the surface. Actually, class is the biggest divider of our nation. A Black person (NOT an African-American, which is an immigrant from Africa and can be a White person like Charlize Theron)who is upper-middle-class has a lot more in common with her White neighbor than she does with the Black woman down the street who just moved to OP from North Lawndale. And when do most White people rub shoulders with poor Blacks in OP? They sure don't live next to them!


Posted: August 12th, 2011 4:41 PM

Please show me ANYWHERE in my initial post where I was intolerant, attacked anyone or even identified w/ the tea party. I pointed out specific examples of hypocrisy yet YOU chose to make it personal and insult ME, rather than addressing my comment. My initial post showed examples of the LEFT being the aggressor, making assumptions, attacking and insulting and you simply proved my point with your response. You clearly assumed I was a rightwing t-bagger simply because i did not agree with you.


Posted: August 12th, 2011 4:32 PM

I'll admit it, I'm definitely "right of center" in many of my viewpoints, but, hmm, I live in OP, my children attend( ed) OP public schools, I have friends of all races, ideology, and orientation, etc. But, to many of my OP "neighbors," who take great pride in their "tolerance," I am a tea-bagger (I don't have cable), a fascist (really, compared to Hitler?), a racist (I live in OP?!?), etc. In OP, the left is the vast majority - you are "backing down" from what?!? Who should fear whom?

epic lulz  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 3:40 PM

Yes, I'm intolerant of the intolerant. I'm bigotted toward the bigotted. I'm racist against the racist. And I'd kill anyone who tried to kill me. To rightwingers, who apparently don't comprehend the difference between cause and effect, all these make me a hypocrite. I suspect that the real problem is that rightwingers are so used to progressives backing down against their bullying, that when anyone stands up to them, they soil their pants in fear.

epic lulz  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 3:34 PM

"I love how the two nutjobs chose to ignore my comment and launch personal attacks against me" LMAO. Ah, hypocrisy, thy name is realitysux. Look, you started it. But like all wingnuts, you neither have the honesty to admit it, nor the spine to take it. Sorry, bub, but this progressive fights back against fascists like you. And he fights fire with fire. You have a choice. You can either grow up and take your hits like an adult, or keep whining like a little teabagger baby.

realitysux sux  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 3:08 PM

I love how you tea party types think you can hurl around silly generalizations and then accuse others of "personal attacks" when you get called out (or when your views are challenged in any way). Your original comment was not worthy of more than a dismissive laugh. Read it again. Your reaction to a pretty funny (and accurate) Hubbuch piece is telling. Relax. It's almost time for happy hour.


Posted: August 12th, 2011 3:03 PM

...we represent a better ethos... Try you represent a bigger ego. BTW your community isn't so diverse. Some of us actually note the distinct color line running from Austin and North to Harlem and Roosevelt. The color, btw, is green.


Posted: August 12th, 2011 2:36 PM

The irony is the intolerance towards those the ultra liberal left deems to be intolerant. I remember the numerous personal attacks and name calling against Chet21 during the D97 referendum. ironically, those in the no camp sounded pretty much like the tea party- enough of the reckless spending, more accountability, and throwing money at a problem is NOT always the best solution. I love how the two nutjobs chose to ignore my comment and launch personal attacks against me based on ZERO facts.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 2:28 PM

That is very true Daniel and a good thing. I think there is alot of tolerance in Oak Park for difference in race, sexual orientation, and religion. It's in accepting and listening to difference in ideas and opinion where we could use some work.

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 2:22 PM

Thanks for the clarification Chet21. I was referring to the last two sentences of your post. Of course, you are entitled to your own perceptions based on your own experiences, but none of us should assume we know why the majority of OP's 50,000-plus residents live here. OP clearly has a reputation for diversity and tolerance, and, though not fully deserved, I know plenty of people who live here because, being black, or gay, or from some minority ethnic group, they feel comfortable here.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 2:13 PM

I have to agree with Chet here. In fact recently I was labeled "Republican" (as if it were a dirty word) just based on not supporting the idea of the Comcast development. Fact is, in over 20 years I've never voted anything other than Democrat. That said, I believe there is room for all opinions, regardless of dogma and I hold on to my right to vote for whomever I choose regardless of party.


Posted: August 12th, 2011 1:57 PM

Mr. Hurtado. I agree with you "that the people who post here are" NOT "typical or representative of the residents of Oak Park." That's a good thing. But my experiences with "tolerance for thee, but not for me" has nothing to do with this site, but my long-term experience as an OP resident. Mr. Hubbuch's column is correct that most "people live in OP because it's close to downtown and the schools are decent." If the active left of this community remembered that.........

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 1:46 PM

I wouldn't assume that people who post here are typical or representative of the residents of Oak Park.


Posted: August 12th, 2011 1:05 PM

Ah, Oak Park, where my wife and I constantly view the hypocrisy of many and how they live by "diversity for thee, but not for me." The name calling and hatred emanated here is epidemic and the comment by epic lulz proves my point. To "realitysux" - people like "lulz" ALWAYS claim the "high road ... and attack and belittle anyone who disagrees with" them. Perfectly stated. Perfectly Oak Park. So sad. So typical.

realitysux sux  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 10:18 AM

Right on epic. Like Mr. Hubbuch, you apparently struck a nerve with the angry crowd. Exposing right-wing hypocrisy is like shooting fish in a barrel.


Posted: August 12th, 2011 2:15 AM

Thanks for proving my point you ignorant hypocrite. Rather than address my comment, which never even stated if I support the tea party platform, your intolerance caused you to launch into a personal attack on me. Its hard to claim the high road of tolerance and acceptance when you attack and belittle anyone who disagrees with you.

epic lulz  

Posted: August 12th, 2011 12:21 AM

Nothing is quite as sad a crying hypocrite wingnut. And nothing is quite as deserving of mockery. I'll make you a deal. As soon as you teabaggers stop calling Obama a fascist, socialist, tarbaby n-word; as soon as you teabaggers stop calling teachers and other union workers lazy and greedy; and as soon as you teabaggers stop trying to destroy my country, then I'll stop refering to you rightwing scum as teabaggers. Deal?


Posted: August 11th, 2011 11:39 PM

A diverse and tolerant community woulnd't refer to conservatives as Teabaggers, level personal attacks against Noel Kuriakos for voicing his positions, allow ken trainor to call conservatives teabaggers and george Bush a loser, or sit silently while the liberal media attacks sarah palin, her family, etc. with derogatory names and then seem shocked when school kids resort to taunting, name calling and bullying.

Closeted in Oak Park  

Posted: August 11th, 2011 11:55 AM

Interesting piece! I like your Trotsky Town better than Kass's People's Republic. I remember the various signs that have amused me over the years such as Nuclear Free Zone, No Hate Zone, various forms of Hate Bush, Kerry/Edwards, and that Big O before he saved us from the indignity of actually having jobs. As for diversity, Oak Park is anything but - actually more clich?s and single-minded, but very proud of its PC commandments.

Ken from Oak Park  

Posted: August 11th, 2011 9:58 AM

I agree that the "our classrooms" line gives us some not so appealing insight into the author's perspective about who is included in "we" in his version of Oak Park. Gosh how wonderful we are that we allow black children on our classrooms.

cal from oak park  

Posted: August 11th, 2011 9:34 AM

I'm with Richard! We'll run away screaming at the first opportunity. I'll take one of those bumper stickers.


Posted: August 11th, 2011 12:36 AM

No, we hate your smug attitude.

Daniel Hurtado  

Posted: August 10th, 2011 7:32 AM

That's a profound observation epic. Hubbuch's writing as though his audience is limited to OP's white residents is telling. I like OP and its aspirations about diversity, but we should not be smug about it. Tho the black/white ratio is about 30/70, we are still somewhat segregated internally. And what about Latinos? There are huge Latino populations to our north and west, but Latinos are all but non-existent in OP.

epic lulz  

Posted: August 10th, 2011 1:22 AM

"It is uplifting to choose to educate our children in a place where African-American children are physically in our classrooms." You know, if you had some AA friends, you might actually stop delineating between "our children" and black kids, and maybe OP would then get one step closer to being actually diverse, instead of pretend, token diverse.

Patricia O'Shea  

Posted: August 10th, 2011 12:44 AM

Ugh. Please tell me I'm not one of "us" just because I live in 60304. Leave me out of the groupthink. I'd prefer to remain independent thankyouverymuch.

Jim Coughlin  

Posted: August 10th, 2011 12:09 AM

"Hell on earth" is not Oak Park, Richard. Please read the report of conditions in Haiti written by Janet Reitman in the latest issue of Rolling Stone. I think your views on Oak Park were more of a vent than a fair evaluation. One thing you have obviously learned is that this is no sleepy village. We're often on the cutting edge and that will stir passions. Stay in touch with this forum. There's lots of good info and opinion posted. Oak Park's always been a work in progress. And for progress.


Posted: August 9th, 2011 11:49 PM

I was excited when I moved into Oak Park. Seemingly had everything I wanted. Yet after eight years I ran out as fast as I could. It would be wrong to castigate an entire town yet there were enough whiners, moaners, gripers,obstructionists and downright nasty people with way too much time on their hands making silly rules and laws that turned what was supposed to be a great town into hell on earth. Here's a bumper sticker for ya Barwin, "I Hate Oak Park". I'd buy that.

Bronwyn Soell from Countryside  

Posted: August 9th, 2011 11:18 PM

My husband grew up in OP and I lived there for years. We looked at houses there, but eventually realized we could not afford the prices or taxes. We love where we live now - near Western Springs. We live in a friendly neighborhood with good schools.Our 'liberalism' and opinions and voting did not change because we moved out of OP. Our friends in and out of OP know we embrace diversity and that would be the case no matter where we lived. Your remarks show that you need to get out of OP more .

Merriweather from LaGrange  

Posted: August 9th, 2011 11:01 PM

This column was meant to be satire, right? Oak Parkers are "better" than those who live in other towns, simply because they choose to live here. Is this the same guy who's constantly crowing about OP's "diversity" that a couple months ago wrote that he didn't even really know any black people? If you're looking for reasons why people "hate" Oak Park, look no further than your own, ridiculous columns. Typical elitist Oak Park BS.


Posted: August 9th, 2011 10:41 PM

How diverse are we really? Its one thing to have your children in school with other children that are different than them. The parents tend to commingle at school functions and at practices. Does Oak Park really see diversity when it comes to private gatherings of their neighbors or friends? Graduation parties? I would think OP is a little less diverse than we think.


Posted: August 9th, 2011 10:33 PM

John, how is it that you manage to write something offensive every week? I don't hate OP. My complaint was with your column that minimized crime in OP. Now, you concede that we have a high crime rate, but you suggest that high crime and taxes are the price we pay for diversity. Are you saying that crime is high because we live in a diverse community? Are you saying we can't have a diverse community that is also safe?

Facebook Connect

Answer Book 2018

To view the full print edition of the Wednesday Journal 2018 Answer Book, please click here.

Quick Links

Sign-up to get the latest news updates for Oak Park and River Forest.

MultimediaContact us
Submit Letter To The Editor
Place a Classified Ad

Classified Ad