There are lots of reasons to love living in the Chicago area. For example, I loved being able to see the hit Broadway musical called Hamilton this past weekend. We drove. My rule is that if we are headed to Chicago for a big event, we take the train. If no big event is happening that will draw tens or hundreds of thousands of people to Chicago at the same time we are going, we drive. Or if our 10 year old daughter is coming with us, she overrules all and insists on a train ride.
On the day we headed into Chicago to see Hamilton, I knew of a march happening on the actual busiest expressway in the USA outside of California. That would be the Dan Ryan Expressway that often looks like this …
Yikes! My oldest son drives that to get to work. The march was to protest gun violence, but I knew it was taking place far south of downtown where we were headed. Here’s a quick look at the march …
That was a very local march that drew thousands and actually shut down the USA’s busiest expressway outside of California for one hour. What I didn’t know was that there was a student-led pro-gun rally planned for downtown Chicago, exactly where we were headed. Uh-oh. This could be trouble, traffic-wise and people-wise.
The traffic moved along well except for a couple tight spots. Once we arrived, we didn’t notice a throng of parents and students brandishing weapons. Here’s why …
Yep, that’s the rally. I grabbed that pic right from the rally’s Facebook page. The pic was posted to show that everyone was there for the rally. Really, where? A direct quote from one of the organizers on the Facebook page revealed, ” 125 were expected but roughly 40 showed up.” OK, find me 40 please. The Chicago Tribune newspaper estimated the crowd(?) at 35, but I won’t quibble over 5.
NOTE: Chicago has 2.7 million residents just inside its city limits, and almost 10 million people in the whole Chicagoland metro area. 40 is 0.0004% of 10 million.
The guns.com website posted this video of the Chicago pro-gun rally and they note at the beginning of the video “dozens gathered.” I guess 35 to 40 does qualify as dozens.
I think the student holding the banner at the 1:05 mark may have listed by his yearbook pic the title of Most Likely to be a Mass Shooter. And to the student doing the speaking at that 1:05 mark, all I can say is “Really nice 80’s porn ‘stache. Well done.”
Chicagoans making wise rally/march choices is just another reason Chicago is one of the world’s great cities.