To the Editor:
I was born and raised in Chicago, and my parents’ history in the city goes back to the 1920s. I have warm, loving, memories of visiting tree-filled Jackson Park and touring the Museum of Science and Industry. I recently re-visited Chicago and was appalled that plans were afloat to construct an Obama Presidential Center in a Jackson Park woodland.
I had always thought of Jackson Park as belonging to the Public Trust and unavailable for development of a ‘Center’ to be used as a tribute to the legacy or hubris of a particular individual.
Allowing this ‘Center’ will set a dangerous precedent for future challenges to allocate a portion of the Public Trust to some other Chicago luminary such as a ‘Hillary Rodham Clinton Center for Women’ or a ‘Robin Williams Center for the Performing Arts.’ To think that patronage might be used to side-step the opportunity for the Public to vote on such an issue is even more disturbing.
My heart would bleed to think that this ‘Center’ will to be built in Jackson Park. Please do not allocate Public Trust land to be allocated for this venture.