Last week, Rahm Emanuel and Chicago Public Schools were given the votes needed to close 50 public schools; arguing that a budget shortfall had left them with no other option.
But that hasn’t stopped them from dedicating $100 million (half of which from public funds) to the construction of a new event center, including a 500-room hotel and basketball arena for DePaul University.
The city say the construction of the arena will attract business and tourism.
But why not use that money to keep at least some of our schools open?
How much opportunity will this deal provide the city of Chicago if, in 20 years, its streets are riddled with uneducated college-age adults?
This tragic story is but a microcosm of the anti-intellectual and corporatist strains of thought corrupting local governments all across America. During times of unprecedented economic hardship, it is nearly unconscionable that we are prioritizing corporate and leisurely interests ahead of educating of America’s future generations.
It was exactly this kind of reckless shortsightedness that led to the financial crisis and subsequent Bush Recession, let’s make some noise and reverse course NOW!
Check out an MSNBC news report on the city’s plan:
Thoughts on this outrageous news?
Is there any justification for using public dollars that could keep at least some of our schools open to fund a basketball arena?
Sound off below!