Help the Center culturel de la Rive-Sud prosper

The South Shore Cultural Center has been an invaluable community and cultural asset since the late 1970s, when community members lobbied the Chicago Park District to save the abandoned and once segregated South Shore Country Club.

Today, the Advisory Board of the Center culturel de la Rive-Sud rests on the shoulders of the members of the community who have made the Center culturel de la Rive-Sud a success.

Unfortunately, the current state of the center raises questions about the park district’s long-term commitment to the vision of those who fought to preserve the center as a cultural asset.

What are the concerns of the advisory board? We are alarmed at the small number of arts-related courses currently offered. We are particularly concerned about the lack of youth and adolescent programming, a gap that is underscored by the onslaught of youth violence plaguing our community.

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We are concerned about the pricing of the courses and fear that the activities are beyond the means of many residents. And we remain disappointed that much of the center is off-limits to the community, with significant space taken up by Park District administrative offices.

The current situation does not reflect a center well placed to meet the long-term cultural needs of the community. We are well aware of the desire of some to merge South Shore Golf with Jackson Park Golf Course.

Our advisory board has officially opposed a consolidation, while supporting much-needed capital investment in both golf courses. Our concern remains that the merger would threaten the habitat surrounding the cultural center and undermine, if not abandon, the cultural mission of the center.

The South Shore Cultural Center Advisory Board remains committed to the center’s core mission and its future viability, and we invite the leaders of the Park District to work with us to get the center back on track.

South Shore Cultural Center Advisory Board
Christine Bowen, President; Bobbie Greer, secretary; Marsha Davis, Treasurer

Elected officials should join doctors in doing no harm

This spring, as medical school students across the country graduated, a wave of violence erupted in mass shootings across America. As Americans celebrated our independence, Highland Park joined that list.

It’s no surprise that some of these same graduates go on to heal gunshot wounds and trauma from future mass shootings. Their regularity is now a grim reality of modern American life. These mass shootings are a public health crisis of epidemic proportions that our future medical professionals do not have the power to solve on their own.

We need the help of our civil servants: elected officials responsible for ensuring the well-being of their fellow citizens.

These elected officials, upon taking office, pledged to support and defend the Constitution which protects the right to bear arms. But the men who wrote the Second Amendment could not have imagined that their words would be used, centuries later, to protect the rights of individuals who buy weapons that can end innocent lives in moments.

When we graduated from medical school this spring, we took the Hippocratic Oath. It ensures that physicians safeguard the health and well-being of patients by focusing on “first, do no harm” (primum non nocere). The Hippocratic Oath has been modified to respond accurately to modern times, but its original intent and core principles still ring true today.

Elected officials must also take an oath, guided by the principle of primum non nocere, to protect the welfare of their constituents. An oath that reflects the reality of American life in 2022, not 1787: allow a community to shop, a child to go to school safely, a patient to be treated in a local medical facility, to a family to enjoy a 4th of July parade.

As physicians, we are committed to protecting the sanctity of human life. We are committed to addressing the epidemic of gun violence, but there is not much we can do. We implore our elected officials to join us in practicing “preventive medicine” and ensuring that no harm is done to our fellow citizens, that we everything should seek to protect.

Celina Dubin, MD; Deniz Cataltepe, MD
Co-Founders and Board Members, Scrubs Addressing the Firearm Epidemic

Putin’s actions threaten mass starvation

With the latest Russian attacks on civilian targets in Kremenchuk, Odessa and Vinnytsia, Vladimir Putin continues to establish himself as the most barbaric war criminal of the modern era.

Like Hitler and Stalin, Putin dreams of restoring his nation’s lost “glory” by inflicting an unrelenting rain of death and destruction on the Ukrainian people. Its only success was to reinforce the national image of Russia as a perpetrator of the genocide. The world’s response should be one of relentless indignation and revulsion.

To their credit, American senses Richard Blumenthal and Lindsey Graham introduced a resolution designating Russia as a state sponsor of terrorism. The $40 billion in military and humanitarian aid approved by Congress was another crucial step in helping Ukraine’s heroic fighters resist Putin’s aggression.

The United States and NATO should now take action to break the Russian blockade of Odessa and other Ukrainian ports, where 20 million tons of grain and other foodstuffs are blocked.

This would do more than relieve inflationary pressures on world food prices. Such humanitarian sealift, protected by military escorts, would save millions of lives. If Ukraine’s food exports are not freed, millions of people in Ethiopia, South Sudan, Nigeria and Yemen risk starvation.

Putin’s delusions of grandeur, like his bloodlust, can be limitless. But we cannot allow Russia to inflict genocide on Ukraine and mass starvation on many peoples.

Alexander B. Kuzma, Ukrainian Catholic University Foundation

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