Reader Columnist: “Dear IOC…”

By Ben Joravsky, from today’s Chicago Reader, “One last argument for why Chicago doesn’t need, want, or deserve the games.”

It’s been almost six months since I last wrote to encourage you not to award Chicago the 2016 games. Back then, as you recall, I was welcoming some of you to town for your official visit. Now, of course, you’re in Copenhagen, preparing to announce on October 2 which city they’ll be held in—Chicago, Madrid, Tokyo, or Rio.

I don’t want Chicago to “win” for the reasons I mentioned last time: we can’t afford the games, and they’ll tear up our parks. But let’s talk about your needs. I urge you, for your own sake: spare yourself the cost overruns, backroom deals, political wrangling, embarrassing scandals, and ugly headlines a Chicago Olympics would almost certainly bring you.

Let me explain.

Let him explain…


20 responses to “Reader Columnist: “Dear IOC…”

  1. I am for the games. As a former military member I am to show what America is about, yes some things will suck such as transportation and crowds of people but it’s only 3 weeks. Also I wish if Chicago didn’t want it, California would have got it!

    I understand what your saying but this is far more than a city but a whole country. People want things such as jobs but are unwilling to give up something to receive something. NOTHING IS FREE!

    I hope we get the games PERIOD!

  2. phoenixinquirer

    Here’s a scary thought about support for Chicago Olympics:

  3. Well Jeebus! With Ben getting his posts here and at the Chicago Reader, his total circulation must be up to 75 or 80 people!

    ugly headlines a Chicago Olympics would almost certainly bring you.

    I’d like to know what percentage of these ‘ugly’ headlines will come straight from Ben J’s often misleading and totally incredible columns.

    This is just the same old Chicago civics circle jerk.

    95% of the city has realistic wants and goals and understands that you don’t achieve these by getting behind the Ben Joravsky’s of the city. The other 5% will actively obstruct progress on these goals because they’re right wing kooks, bitter left wing hacks, or just out and out clueless about the way this city works and what it takes to keep it working.

    I guess the good news is, should we get the olympics, we get like a decade of more laughs from these nuts.

  4. DirectActionWORKS

    Dear all concerned with the Olympics in Chicago, and those who support the brave tactics of the 6 arrested in Daley Plaza Tuesday night,

    The time is now to publicize Tuesday’s events, and to start organizing a support structure for those who have been arrested. Those of us who are truly concerned with the Olympic circus that may come to this city cannot let this opportunity go to waste.
    We also cannot let these 6 be alone in their legal struggles, and if the Olympics end up NOT coming to Chicago then we need to still publicize this, the important tactic of direct action, and the truth about the corporate games.

    I am proposing that all those with resources, ideas and networks bring them to the table and begin to build a larger base that will pull in legal and financial support, as well as publicity to the direct action itself.
    Thinking we all should start working towards the following.
    -Fundraiser events for those arrested, bail, legal support, etc.
    -Outreach to possible alliances also organizing against the games
    -Outreach to media, other mediums of publicity
    -Website/contact information for local/national/international press

    We are sure to have people disagree with the direct action tactics employed by the six arrestees. But, we must fervently remind those who oppose of the tactics yet are against the 2016 games in Chicago that freedom, equality and accountability have not often been won through formal protest actions. Many of the heroes behind the struggles have sat in jail cells while support bases were built around them to publicize the issue, the tactic and the movement.

    There is an AA meeting tomorrow at Roosevelt University’s FAiman ounge—2nd floor (time to be determined, I imagine its from 4-6pm)
    All are welcome to come, as this will be the main topic of discussion and organizing.

    IOC decisions is also tomorrow and there is an event at Daley Plaza from 9am-1130pm. I am proposing anti-games forces show up with signs that say “Drop the Charges on the Daley 6” or “free the Daley 6,” along with information about the Olympic plague.

    “The Daley 6” is an idea that I had to publicize not only those arrested, but also to bring the real criminals to mind. Why is it that those who really should be charged with felony mob action are the same ones to gain most from the Olympics?

  5. People in Chicago are scared the GAMES will make the economy better and bring profit while rasing up housing cost, OKAY!

    So what do you want because what people don’t understand is you can’t have two things at once. If the economy improves housing prices will go up, but then you want housing prices to stay low and a better economy, UNREALASTIC!!!

    Don’t understand just like people what more money for schools, park, police, etc but don’t want to pay extra taxes. People the money has to come from somewhere, if you take money from a group then another group loses the money!

    The games will be good for AMERICA not just one city! LOOK AT THE BIG PICTURE! No matter how much you give school, people will always use the same line to battle every else they hate!


  6. All the anti-Olympics sky-is-falling folks need to get a grip here.

    There has been an exaustive 4 year process in place to select the city. If Chicago was not of the highest caliber and able to pull this off, it simply would not have made it this far. (Take a look at NYC 2012 bid).

    If Chicago gets the olympics, it will be an interesting 7 years, but then ya know what? Life will go on. The city won’t crumble, the state won’t burn in flames. Like all previous cities, the Olympic sites will be built, the Olympics will come, it will be a big party, and then life will go on.

    Lets get real here – The vast majority of people in Chicago will be unaffected for the next 7 years. London 2012 is 3 years away now. Is London imploding? Have the trains stopped running? Food shortages? Riots and explosions?

    If you don’t like the Olympics then fine. Come 2016 you can rent out your home for a month for an big paycheck and go hide you head in the sand in Rio with a free vacation. When you return Chicago will still be here, and life will go on.

    Take a deep breathe folks and get a grip.

  7. You guys are anti-American. Do something more constructive with your time. America deserves the Olympics and there’s nothing you can say or do to stop it…you traitors.

    • Lol? Anti american? With whar substance do you speak from? I hope your not a police officer. We need police officers who can think and not regergitate rhetoric.
      You think the games is good for chicago?
      What has happened to Vancouvr?

  8. Oprah can continue to have her stupid show but she will never ever represent the collective opinions of the city of Chicago. Maybe she can afford 100 pairs of Nike sneakers. Does that mean that everybody else can?

  9. DirectActionWORKS = blah blah blah. Get the point! These 6 are heros now? what a joke. 6 fools get a flag, light it on fire and get arrested. Wow a noble brave act! What heros! What patriots!

    “international press”? “outreach to media”. blah blah blah blah. Nobody cares. They aren’t going to prison, will get a slap on the wrist. and forgotten about, as they should be, by tomorrow afternoon when Chicago 2016 is confirmed.

    • You must be an idiot?
      Read somerhing enlightening and take your ignorant communication skills to a teabaf meeting…..
      Your freedims were noy gained through such behavior, they were gained through unlawful direct action…

  10. The people behind no games are out of touch with Chicago.

    I hope we get the games. It is time for Chicago to once again host the world.

    Good Luck Mayor Daley and the Chicago Bid Team.

  11. I have something to say to those who support the anarchists who got into a scuffle with City workers and the Chicago Police Department. You did not think your “action” out and you never consulted with an attorney to determine what the ramifications of your actions. These are key things that activists do before they engage in any form of civil disobedience. The fact, too, that you are in downtown with a great number of people with cellular phone cameras and where there are several dozen police patrols in the vicinity did not enter into your minds before you decided to grab the decorations?

    Second, if your small contingent of anarchists asked the No Games group about what you had planned days in advance, the group would have asked you to not do it and asked you to not carry out such an incident on the same day, forty minutes after we ended our peaceful, law-abiding rally. The incident occurred and what do we have: media that bring up No Games and show pictures of the incident that No Games was not a party to. In a world made up of images and perceptions, your group made No Games seem like it was behind the incident. Some foreign press have shown photos of the incident or the arrest and made it seem like it was all No Games.

    I will recommend for those involved in the incident to obtain legal counsel for all those involved and attempt to deal with the situation. If your parents or relatives will not assist you with legal representation, please let people know. It will probably cost a lot of money, but believe me it will be worth it. I doubt that any of the charges will be dropped, though with the right attorney, things can happen.

    If you wish to engage in activism, attend a training or several trainings and understand what direct action is all about.

  12. I thought the 6 whackos who got locked up by 5-0 weren’t even remotely affiliated with NGC. Interesting that they appear here.

    • Sorry, Tim, but the anarchists did what they did independent of No Games Chicago. However, that doesn’t mean that people, for or against the Chicago bid, should be heartless. I think that I scolded their actions, but since these are young people (for the most part, people younger than 25) I want to know what is happening. It’s like the bible says, love the sinner, hate the sin.

  13. “The people behind no games are out of touch with Chicago.

    I hope we get the games. It is time for Chicago to once again host the world.

    Good Luck Mayor Daley and the Chicago Bid Team.

    Are you kidding me? Daley will never get any of my support orespect because his interests are always prioritized over the citizens of the city.

  14. anyone supporting this site are pathetic pieces of sh#t. you have no clue what this could have done for the City and the region…you stupid fuck ing shit heads. with so many construction workers out of work, you want to keep them out of work. clueless f#cks

  15. I hope construction workers get back to work, but not on my dime, knucklehead!

  16. If you didn’t want the Olympics here in Chicago you are about the most retarded people I ever came in contact with. No Games Chicago is just being braggy and saying “If the Olympics came here to Chicago our city will be a hellhole.” They’re taking way too much pride in Rio winning the Olympics over us. They should shut up for Christ’s sake! Also, I love those strong words KB. That’s how pissed I am at No Games Chicago, and you’re the knucklehead 47th

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