Won’t Somebody Please Think of the Children?

Mayor Daley sure is adamant about putting the Chicago Children’s Museum in Grant Park. He came out swinging today claiming “That park belongs to families and children. It doesn’t belong to a few people on Lake Shore Drive, Randolph Street or Michigan Avenue.” You would think he would be happy, seeing that he’s one step closer to getting his Chicago casino. Maybe he wants to put that in Grant Park, too?

I’m all for Children’s Museums…. growing up in Indiana, I loved the Children’s Museum in Indianapolis and I wasn’t as impressed with the one here in Chicago. So maybe they do need some new digs.

But is taking up park space really the best option for it? Some people think it’s not just a bad idea, but illegal. While other’s disagree. Here’s a map of the proposed museum location.

Personally, I think the Mayor’s gone off his rocker. Is anyone really saying they don’t think the park should be for everyone? Is anyone really trying to ban children?! I think the point they are making is that it should remain park space. I think he’s right when he says that the park belongs to families and children. But it also belongs to adults and the single. It’s a park for the enjoyment of all the citizens of Chicago, and I think I find myself in the “nay” camp on this one. I do understand that most of the museum would be under upper Randolph… but not all of it. And I do think there is merit to the “slippery slope” argument. Today’s it’s a children’s museum. What’s next? What about a Native American museum? Or a jazz/blues museum? They are all worthy causes… but is Grant Park the right place for them?

As soon as you let one worthy cause take a little of the park space, you have to start playing favorites… and I think that’s not only a bad precedent to set for the use of the park space, I think it’s a bad precedent to set for worthy causes as well.

What do you think?

2 Comments so far

  1. Joseph J. Finn (unregistered) on September 20th, 2007 @ 10:18 am

    “As soon as you let one worthy cause take a little of the park space”

    My understanding is that it would be occupying part of the old fieldhouse, which is already there. Eliminate the admission fee, and this is a solid “yea” for me.

  2. Bill V (unregistered) on September 20th, 2007 @ 3:47 pm

    There’s a lot at the end of my street that’s been vacant for a while, they can put it there.

    Better keep that admission fee, it’s really the only way to keep the place nice, clean and updated. What else would you do, raise taxes?

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