As a Chicagoan, I'm embarrassed by the constant "Fear" tactics which are being put for NATO. Virtually all the coverage is negative. Stories never get far enough past the played-up violence aspects to get to the real reasons people are here. i
This is a very Democratic town. Yet, we're discouraged from expressing our First Amendment Rights, and instead encouraged to stay home and keep a low profile. It gets even worse though as we simply get outright intimidation from those hired to protect.
Example over the jump.
This above picture came with the following headline:
Protesters at the Michigan Bridge over the Chicago River after the National Nurses Rally Chicago. (Heather Charles/Chicago Tribune)There's one problem. Where's the protesters? You can certainly see a lot of police officers.
And that's what I'm talking about. The Chicago Police estimate that from 2k-10k people will show up on Sunday for the largest rally. The second biggest one--which was the Nurses today--drew 2300.
According to this article, there could be up to 4818 police officers assigned for NATO.
Instead of constantly telling us how horrible things are going to be, the media in Chicago should be telling people, "Don't let a few jerks ruin it for the rest of us." As a public, we need to reject this kind of thinking.
In this atmosphere, it seems like a confrontation is much more likely. And that's a shame, especially in Chicago in the year 2012.