Congratulations on the objective and interesting story about the Mayors Daley [Daley vs. Daley, by David Bernstein, September]. I happen to be among the born-and-bred Chicagoans who, while recognizing the imperfections in their administrations, are grateful for the way they have run our city. Like both of the mayors, I truly love Chicago and take personal pride and pleasure in hearing tourists (I am a Chicago Greeter volunteer) compliment "my Chicago."
Your point that neither of the Mayors Daley enriched himself is, in my view, at the heart of the reasons Chicagoans have elected them again and again. Unlike so many politicians who see public office as a way to pocket millions of dollars regardless of the costs to the people they serve, the Daleys’ modest lifestyle has continued to serve as proof that having what they both termed "the best job in the world" is what motivates them. Chicagoans like me who share their profound love for Chicago understand.
Both Mayors Richard J. and Richard M. Daley merit commendation because they have both shared a deep love and concern for the city of Chicago. It’s incredible how influential Irish Americans have been in Chicago for the past few generations. Madigan, Hynes, Dunne, Burke, Corboy, Hartigan, Byrne, Tully, McMorrow, O’Brien, and Fitzgerald are just a few of the prominent ones. [Daley] has also been a different kind of Irish green through making Chicago more environmentally pristine.
As an observant resident of three major cities in the United States, I was inspired to comment on your Daley vs. Daley cover story. [We lived in] New York and San Francisco, and—for the last 17 years—the "Windy City" has been our place called home. Friends that visit from all over the country even comment about the seasonal flowers and holiday decorations at O’Hare! Since when have the words "beautiful" and "airport" been in the same sentence? Undeniably, Mayor Daley has delivered to the people of this city, and I am grateful.
One question: Are the feature writers for your magazine supposed to be impartial? It is quite obvious to any reader that David Bernstein is not a Daley enthusiast. From the almost sinister cover photo selected to the subtle negative verbiage throughout the text, David Bernstein has not disguised his opinion. For every positive comment, there were at least five negative. Even the good deeds were qualified in some manner to diminish their effectiveness. David Bernstein’s article is an insult to Mayor Daley and the years he has given to make Chicago a great city. Chicago magazine needs to reevaluate its staff writers unless anti-Daley is the publication agenda. As for Mr. Bernstein—I wonder if that toll collector opportunity is still available.
Daley vs. Daley was as objective as one could hope for when comparing this extraordinary father-son duo who proved that in Chicago graft and corruption can be compatible with effective government.
As a Chicago magazine reader of many years, I was very disappointed by the August cover story, Best of Chicago [edited by Graham Meyer and Jennifer Tanaka]. The title of the story should have been Best of the North Side of Chicago. Although I am sure that many of the North Side discoveries within the article should be considered "The Best," surely the authors could have found a few things on the South Side that fit into that category.
In the women’s designer clothing section of October’s The Best for Less, Filene’s Basement was incorrectly called Filene’s.