Fair is Fair
To the editor: This is in response to the recent editorial “Would the Chicago City Council Punish the Cubs?” For the second time, the Tribune has published an editorial reiterating the opinions of business groups that lobby against laws to improve working-class jobs, in this case against the proposed Chicago Fair Workweek Ordinance.
Sure, there are details yet to be worked out in the proposed ordinance, but the editorials get its purpose wrong. The goal is not about punishing business, but about treating workers fairly. If being able to adjust employees' schedules at the last minute is as essential to profitability as the Tribune asserts, then businesses should be willing to pay for it. Workers and families certainly do.
Currently, all of the costs of just-in-time scheduling are put on the shoulders of workers as they scramble to arrange last-minute child care, miss their trains or buses, or come up short on their rent. The proposed Chicago Fair Workweek Ordinance does not prohibit employers from adjusting employees' hours. It just helps ensure that employers limit adjustments to only those that are literally worth it to the business.
— Susan Lambert, Chicago
To the editor: I am 77 years old and probably won’t have many more chances to vote for governor. I had hoped to have a clear choice as to which candidate would provide the leadership that would get our state out of the financial mess we have been languishing in for decades. However, it appears as if, again, I will have to hold my nose and vote for one of the major-party candidates, neither of whom have provided the voters with any plan to improve our state’s financial straits. How depressing!
— Richard Schultz, Crete
— Neil Gaffney, Chicago
Unfit to serve
To the editor: Donald Trump spoke at a rally in Mississippi on Tuesday, Oct. 2. In the course of his speech, he mocked Christine Blasey Ford, the woman who has accused Supreme Court nominee Brett Kavanaugh of sexual assault when they were teenagers.
At this point, all we have is Kavanaugh’s word against Ford’s, so we don’t really know the full truth, but it is very clear that Ford was definitely a victim of sexual assault. For Trump to stand up in front of a crowd of people and make fun of Ford is just one more reason, in a long list of reasons, that he is not fit to be president of the United States.
— Judy Weik, Oak Park
A new low
To the editor: Donald Trump's recent speech mocking Brett Kavanaugh accuser Christine Blasey Ford was a new low, even for him. This is a man who has not an ounce of empathy for anyone but himself. That the Republican Party continues to enable him so it can get another nominee on the Supreme Court and more tax cuts for the rich is a tragedy for our democracy.
Trump's base will support him no matter what he says or does, but its members are a steadily shrinking minority — not enough to stop the blue wave of Democrats from winning office in November. Once we have control of the House, the subpoenas for Trump's taxes will be the beginning of a real effort to hold this president accountable to the rule of law.
— Richard Keslinke, Algonquin
Free trade fail
To the editor: It seems reasonably clear that President Donald Trump will require surgery for the injuries incurred while patting himself on the back with regard to what was formerly called NAFTA. What is totally unclear is why Trump — or anyone else — could credibly claim that much has been accomplished, except for a lot of publicity, something which Trump obviously covets.
Let’s see. NAFTA has been renamed, such that the U.S. appears first. Is that all that Trump meant by his slogan “America First”? Then, it is said, Canada will relax — but not eliminate — its quotas on certain dairy products. That move primarily will help Canadian consumers, but it may be of modest assistance to the U.S. dairy industry. Is that what Trump promised in his campaign rhetoric? Next, and quite likely off-setting any possible benefit to the U.S. from the Canadian dairy trade changes, is the increase in the domestic content requirements for the auto industry — a clear step backward.
Trump’s views on trade restraints have been, and are, demonstrably horrible economics, and this “redoing” of NAFTA does not detract in any way from that conclusion.
— William P. Gottschalk, Lake Forest